Sweden extradites outlawed PKK member to Turkiye: report
State media reported on Saturday that Sweden has extradited a convicted member of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) to Turkey in response to Ankara’s demands for more action from Stockholm in exchange for approving Turkey’s membership in NATO.
After receiving a six-year and ten-month prison sentence in Turkey for his PKK membership, Mahmut Tat fled to Sweden in 2015. His claim for asylum, however, was turned down.
According to the Anadolu news agency, Tat landed in Istanbul on Friday night after being detained by Swedish officials.
According to an exclusive NTV story, he was detained by Turkish police not long after arriving at the Istanbul airport.
Despite a June agreement in Madrid, Turkiye has refused to ratify Finland and Sweden’s NATO applications, accusing them in particular of providing a haven for banned Kurdish groups it views as “terrorists.”
Finland and Sweden ended their long-standing military non-alignment and submitted an application to join NATO after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in May.
The decision can only be made since Turkey and Hungary have not yet accepted their membership in the US-led defense alliance.
Mevlut Cavusoglu met with his counterparts from Sweden and Finland during a NATO conference this week in Bucharest. Cavusoglu added that the comments (coming out of Sweden) are wonderful and “the determination is strong but that we need to see genuine efforts.”
Ankara asserts that Stockholm needs to take action in regards to issues like the extradition of criminals and the freezing of terrorist assets.