Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonytė met with Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson of the Kingdom of Sweden. The Prime Minister said at a news conference after the meeting that he and the visitor addressed the next NATO summit in Vilnius, the security situation in the Baltic area, and support for Ukraine. Jūratė Vagauskaitė writes on the tv3.lt news website that the prospects of Sweden and Finland joining NATO are uncertain due to Turkey’s disputes with Sweden.
Hungary has not yet confirmed its NATO membership, and Finland has begun to discuss “breaking away” from Sweden and attempting to join NATO independently. Previously, it was emphasized that Sweden and Finland would only join the Alliance jointly.
According to Šimonytė, Lithuania and Sweden are longstanding and excellent neighbours and allies. Thus, it is only logical that Sweden joining NATO is crucial for Lithuania. She said that this is significant for both individual nations and the whole region, whose security would be considerably boosted by Sweden’s participation.
When asked what the President of Lithuania should say in the Turkish capital, where he is likely to travel before the NATO meeting, the Prime Minister responded: “What can we say in Ankara? One thing we can say is that third-world nations are attempting to achieve what we have previously seen in the United States and elsewhere. There are provocation and escalation efforts about specific factors (the provocation in Sweden with the burning of the Koran).
This is clearer to us since we work in an area where such efforts are commonplace. We might remark that not all things are as they seem. The area’s security is also crucial; it is not only a matter of Swedish and Finnish participation. It pertains to the whole area. We are located in this area, and I believe that good NATO members are keen on having Sweden and Finland join their ranks. We are permitted to emphasize this, “said the Prime Minister.
When debating the possibility of Turkey joining NATO this summer, the Swedish Prime Minister said that he supported the country’s right to self-determination.
“I sense a strong commitment from my partners. I know that dedication exists since the majority swiftly approved our application for membership. The NATO Secretary General even said that this is the quickest approach, despite the fact that it is insufficient. Sweden and Finland have not been approved by Turkey and Hungary.
We are welcome; we are part of the family, we recognize that all nations must ratify, and we recognize that only Turkey can make decisions for Turkey. “He acknowledged that the Swedes do feel welcome since the support from other nations, even verbal support, has been enormous.
He stated that he could not persuade Turkey to depart from the agreement. “Our commitments under the trilateral agreement are quite clear; we are keeping our word. They have indicated that they are aware of our initiatives, particularly in the battle against terrorism, legislative amendments, and the export of armaments. But we recognize that Turkey must make its own choice, and we need the consent of all NATO nations”, said the Swedish Prime Minister.
It is not his responsibility to satisfy anybody, but he will do all he can to get Sweden and Finland to join NATO.
“I appreciate the process of acceptance by other nations, as well as the wrath of these nations in response to the events in Stockholm, which threaten to derail the process of accession. However, I do not think that this should distract from the overarching goal of boosting European security. <…> We desire NATO membership because participation would improve Sweden’s security and because we are not humble. We understand that we can contribute to aviation both above and below water. We possess items that might benefit the allies. We want our own protection, but we may also provide it to others “, said Mr Kristersson.
The Prime Minister said that if Sweden joined NATO, it would also participate in the Alliance’s air policing role in Lithuania.
“As a potential ally, Sweden is prepared to assist Lithuania and other Baltic nations with air policing and intelligence via an air policing mission,” the lawmaker told reporters at the Government. He said that Stockholm is thankful to Lithuania for supporting the NATO membership of Sweden and Finland.
The prime ministers were also questioned about the power excess conflicts between Lithuania and Sweden. This dispute has not been addressed and, according to the Prime Minister of Lithuania, will not be resolved in the near future since it involves money, which is a touchy subject even among friends. A third party has been appointed to arbitrate the issue.
“As I’ve said several times, this deal requires a consensus over which country receives what portion of the income. Such accords are seldom reached quickly. This problem raises two issues: monetary and technological, due to the different nature of the electrical market’s flows.
We have an opinion on the source of the flow, which we have shared with the Swedish Ministry of Industry. However, the Swedish Ministry of Industry has a different viewpoint.
The problem is thus presented by unanimity to the European Commission (EC). It will address the subject of the rule interpretation pertaining to the origins of the surplus, the electricity, and the surplus income. This procedure will not be fast “, added Ms Šimonytė.
The Swedish Prime Minister reiterated her sentiments, praising the fact that at least an agreement could be made to transfer responsibility for the matter to the European Union.
“Both nations will accept the European Union’s decision, we have found the best solution to the situation, and we ask the third country to take this into consideration,” he added.