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    Sweden: Erdogan Effigy ‘Act of Sabotage’ Against NATO Bid

    Sweden: Erdogan Effigy ‘Act of Sabotage’ Against NATO Bid

    ANKARA, — Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson on Friday denounced a protest by Kurds in central Stockholm, where an effigy of Turkey's president was hung from a lamppost, as an act of “sabotage” against 's bid to join .

    The protest outside Hall on Wednesday drew an angry backlash from Turkey, a NATO member which already had held off on approving Sweden's application to become part of the Western military alliance until the government in Stockholm satisfies its demands.

    The speaker of Turkey's parliament, Mustafa Sentop, canceled a visit by Andreas Norlén, the speaker of the Swedish parliament, that was scheduled for next Tuesday. Turkish lawmakers need to ratify Sweden's NATO application for the Nordic nation to become a member.

    “I believe it is regrettable that the visit has been canceled,” Norlén told Swedish news agency TT.

    Turkey has made its approval conditional on Stockholm cracking down on exiled Kurdish militants and other groups that Ankara considers a threat to its national security. The Turkish Foreign Ministry summoned the Swedish ambassador on Thursday over the Stockholm demonstration.

    Kristersson condemned the incident involving the effigy of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. He told Swedish broadcaster TV4 on Friday that it was “extremely serious” to stage a “mock execution of a foreign democratically elected leader” in a country where two leading…

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