Finland and Sweden are on path to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) as Turkiye has dropped the veto.    

Media reports say a last minute agreement was reached between Turkiye, Sweden and Finland to allow the two Nordic countries to join the North Atlantic Alliance on the eve of the Alliance’s summit in Madrid.  The breakthrough reportedly came after four hours of talks.  

Al Jazeera says the lifting of the veto means that Helsinki and Stockholm can proceed with their application to join the North Alliance, cementing what is set to be the biggest shift in European security in decades, as the two, long neutral Nordic countries seek NATO protection.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg and Turkiye’s presidency confirmed the accord in separate statements, after talks between the NATO chief, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson, and Finnish President Sauli Niinisto.

Stoltenberg reportedly said the terms of the deal involved Sweden intensifying work on Turkish extradition requests and amending Swedish and Finnish law to toughen their approach to those seen as threats by Ankara.

According to Al-Jazeera, Stoltenberg also said Sweden and Finland would lift their restrictions on selling weapons to Turkiye.

Recall, Turkiye has raised serious concerns that Sweden has been harboring members of the banned Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which took up arms against the Turkish state in 1984.  Stockholm has denied the accusation.

The Turkish presidency statement on June 28 said the four-way agreement meant: “Full cooperation with Turkiye in the fight against the PKK and its affiliates”.

It also said Sweden and Finland were “demonstrating solidarity with Turkiye in the fight against terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.”

According to the BBC, Finland's President Niinisto said the three countries signed the joint memorandum “to extend their full support against threats to each other's security.”

Sweden's Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson reportedly said it was “a very important step for NATO.”