Sweden’s Supreme Court Rejects Extradition Request By Ankara Against Two Turkish Nationals

Image of the Swedish Supreme Court.

Image of the Swedish Supreme Court. Credit: Tage Olsin/Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0

Sweden’s Supreme Court, this Thursday, July 13, ruled against the extradition of two Turkish nationals to Ankara.

The authorities in Turkey claimed that the two men were part of a suspected ‘terrorist group’. However, the judge insisted that the downloading and use of a mobile app did not constitute a terrorist offence nor make its users ‘terrorists’.

Last Monday 10, after a meeting in Vilnius ahead of the NATO summit, Turkish President Erdogan agreed to support Sweden’s application for membership of the Alliance.

He did however ratify his previous demands that Stockholm took steps to combat what he called the harbouring of terrorists by the Scandinavian nation.

Turkey and Sweden had stalled Sweden’s application request

Erdogan, along with Hungary, had stalled the Swedish application despite their applying at the same time as neighbouring Finland, who subsequently became full NATO members.

He has always insisted that Stockholm was not doing enough to fulfil demands that Ankara had placed upon its government with respect to these ‘terrorists’, in the context of a trilateral deal that was struck last year.

The two men were accused of belonging to the Gulenist movement

Today’s court hearing involved two Turks who had been residing in Sweden. Ankara demanded their extradition, accusing them of being members of a group they said were behind the failed coup attempt in 2016.

The two belonged to the Gulenist movement, a group designated as a terrorist organisation, claimed the Ankara authorities. It is also known in Turkey as the ‘Fetullahist Terrorist Organisation’, or ‘FETO’

In a statement, the court said: ‘The alleged criminal acts have consisted of the persons allegedly joining the Gulen movement by downloading and using a mobile application, which is used by the movement’s members’.

Under Swedish law, the judicial body stated that users of this app could not be considered to be participants in a terrorist organisation.

Extradition could only be granted when a defendant was proven to have broken a law that constituted a crime in both Turkey and Sweden the court added, as reported by gerceknews.com.

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com