Türkiye expects “not kind words but concrete steps” to address its security concerns from NATO hopefuls Sweden and Finland, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday, referring to Ankara's desire for the extradition of accused criminals.
Speaking at a joint news conference with his Gambian counterpart Mamadou Tangara, Cavusoglu said as there is nothing more to say about Türkiye's demands, "concrete steps must be taken from now on," referring to the extradition of accused criminals, the freezing of terror assets, and ending terrorist activities.
Sweden refusing to extradite an accused terrorist – Bulent Kenes – to Türkiye is a "very negative development," said Cavusoglu.
Sweden’s top court on Monday rejected Türkiye’s request for the extradition of Kenes, a fugitive terrorist group suspect living on Swedish soil, saying that as he had not been sentenced to a year of more in prison, he was not eligible for extradition.
Kenes, the former editor-in-chief of Today's Zaman newspaper and a suspected member of the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), lives in Sweden.
In the defeated 2016 coup orchestrated by FETO and its US-based leader Fetullah Gulen, 251 people were killed and 2,734 injured.
Türkiye, Finland, and Sweden signed a memorandum this June on the Nordic countries' bids for NATO membership. The memorandum requires Finland and Sweden to take steps on Türkiye's terrorism concerns, including the extradition of terror suspects, and to lift an arms embargo.
In return, Türkiye would allow the Nordic countries to become NATO members.
However, Ankara has accused Finland and Sweden of not complying with the deal, as both nations have so far failed to extradite wanted terrorists sought by Ankara.