Hungary Delays Sweden’s NATO Bid, Vote to be Held in November
In a move that further delays Sweden’s inclusion in NATO, the Hungarian parliament has refused to hold a vote on the matter. Hungary, led by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, has been the main obstacle to Sweden’s admission into the alliance. The governing Fidesz party, which holds an absolute majority in the Hungarian parliament, blocked the proposal to schedule a vote.
The next possible time for voting on the ratification will be during the parliamentary session beginning on November 6. This delay follows Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s submission of a protocol to Turkey’s parliament to approve Sweden’s admission. It is worth noting that all 31 NATO allies must endorse Sweden’s accession.
Hungarian officials have made it clear that their country will not be the last member to endorse Sweden’s bid. Previously, Hungary has followed Turkey’s lead when it comes to NATO expansion. However, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto emphasized that Turkey’s ratification process does not influence Hungary’s sovereign decision on Sweden’s membership.
This delay has frustrated other NATO allies who were eager to accept both Sweden and Finland into the alliance after they dropped their military neutrality. It seems that Hungary’s refusal to schedule a vote is causing tension within NATO. Opposition politicians in Hungary believe that Prime Minister Orbán’s party is following Ankara’s timetable, and there is constant dialogue between Hungary and Turkey on the question of Sweden’s membership.
As the situation stands, it is believed that Hungary and Turkey may ratify Sweden’s membership around the same time. However, with the vote now pushed to November, the final decision on Sweden’s inclusion in NATO still hangs in the balance.
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