The European Union published its regular report on the situation Turkey. The Commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Expansion, Johannes Hahn, stated that no new developments in the framework of the negotiation process with Ankara.
According to Euronews, Hahn stressed worsening human rights in Turkey, regress in many areas such as the economic sphere, and said outright that “Turkey continues to move away from the EU.”
Meanwhile, the European Commissioner expressed satisfaction with an agreement on refugees signed with Ankara, and pointed to “the ongoing cooperation between the parties in a number of areas that are of mutual interest.”
CALL TO “SETTLEMENT PROCESS”
The Chairman of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), Liliane Maury Pasquier, welcomed the end of hunger strikes, which for a long time were being led by three deputies and hundreds of prisoners in Turkey. In addition, she called on the parties to restore the process of attempting to resolve the Kurdish question in order to ensure regional peace in the south-east of the country.
“I am convinced that political and legal issues need to be resolved not by holding life-threatening actions, but by fostering dialogue and negotiations. Therefore, I urge the parties to resume the settlement process that the region so badly needs to ensure stability and peace, ” Pasquier said.
NEW SHIPPING STRATEGY
The PACE Chairperson expressed the hope that, taking into account the recommendations of the Venice Commission and PACE regarding the new judicial strategy, the Turkish authorities would take the necessary measures to eliminate the imperfections of the existing system, which would contribute to the normalization of the political life of the country.
Pasquier noted that the new legal proceedings strategy will help restore media and press freedoms in accordance with PACE norms, and stressed the Council of Europe’s readiness to provide Turkey with all kinds of assistance in this matter.
FIRST REACTION OF THE TURKISH SIDE
The Deputy Foreign Minister of Turkey, and Chairman of the EU Relations Department, Ambassador Faruk Kaymakcı, made a statement commenting on the report of the European Commission.
“Of course, we will listen to the part of the report that contains consistent and reasonable criticism of Turkey. However, we cannot accept unjust and untrue comments. The report reflects the EU’s own existential crisis,” he said.
“The EU has failed to give a true description of the current situation in our country. There are forces that want to distance the EU from Turkey. But Turkey is part of Europe. Discussions on 14 chapters within the framework of the negotiation process were suspended for political reasons. But the work continues. The EU needs to take steps towards updating the provisions of the Customs Union.
The report contains references to the work on visa liberalization. It is emphasized that as a result of the work carried out, another criterion was fulfilled, with the result that the total number of criteria fulfilled by Turkey reached 66.
It seems that the EU is far from aware of the presence and significance of the threats that our country faces face to face. Turkey is making efforts to strike a balance between freedom and security.
The reference to FETÖ report to the “Gülen movement” is unacceptable, as if this is a public organization, ” Kaymakcı stressed.