ANKARA, Sept 26 (Reuters) – President Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey’s parliament would keep its promise to approve Sweden’s entry into NATO if U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration clears the way for the sale of F-16 jets to Ankara. Turkish media reported on Tuesday.
Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken discussed Sweden’s NATO membership in New York last week, Erdogan told reporters while flying back from the Azerbaijani exclave of Nakhchivan. Erdogan said the US government linked the sale of F-16 fighters to Turkey with Ankara’s approval of the Swedish offer.
“If they (the US) keep their promises, our Congress will keep its promises. The Turkish parliament will have the final say on Sweden joining NATO,” he said.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has once again asked that Sweden be treated with “respect” before he approves Sweden’s entry into the NATO military alliance. Orban told lawmakers on Monday that Sweden had no influence on Hungary to pressure the government into the vote, not even that the Hungarian air force had Swedish Gripen fighter jets. He said that if Hungary can no longer lease planes made by the Saab Aircraft Company, it may switch to other aircraft.