The Swedish government has decided to extradite to Turkey a man who had been convicted of fraud in 2013 and 2016. It is the first extradition case since Sweden and Finland signed an agreement with Turkey to join NATO last June. which included the commitment of the first two to extradite a series of wanted “terrorist criminals” in Turkey. It is not clear, however, whether the person who will be extradited is on the list agreed in June with Turkey, and a spokesman for the Swedish justice minister told Reuters not wanting to comment on it. Although the bulk of Turkey’s extradition requests concern ethnic Kurdish people accused of serious crimes (but persecuted by the Turkish government, according to several analysts), the extradition of a person accused of common crimes is seen as a sign of goodwill on the part of Sweden.
The extradition agreement was signed after Turkey initially vetoed the two countries ‘entry into NATO, accusing them of supporting and welcoming members of some Kurdish organizations, notably the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). which the president and his party regard as terrorist organizations. The veto was lifted after Sweden and Finland pledged to cooperate in the fight against the PKK and the extradition of some wanted criminals in Turkey. To allow a new country to join NATO, all other member countries need to vote in favor.