Annual report on Turkey’s progress on EU membership.

Reactions: European and Turkish Sides

Turkey has shown us, rule of law issues continue to be a persistent challengeyesterday_today and we need adequate tools to respond to these challenges and be tough when European values are put into question. Accession negotiations with Turkey must be put on hold for as long as the regime continues to flout fundamental rights. They shamelessly say that Turkey’s EU negotiations should be reviewed. You are late. Review it as soon as possible. But do not just review, make your final decision. The EU has already lost its credibility and reputation for the Turkish people…


Enlargement process also requires commitment from aspirants

The EPP Group has welcomed the progress made by the candidate and potential candidates for EU membership in reforming their societies towards the European path, but recalled that the enlargement process also requires long-lasting commitment on their side. Following today’s presentation by the European Commission of the 2016 Enlargement Package, Vice-Chairwoman of the EPP Group responsible for Neighbourhood Policy and Euronest, Sandra Kalniete MEP, and the EPP Group Spokesman for Foreign Affairs, Cristian Preda MEP, encouraged aspirants to EU membership to deliver better on their commitments, especially the observation of the rule of law.

“After the Brexit decision, it is vitally important for the EU to reaffirm its commitment to those who wish to progress towards EU membership. Bosnia and Herzegovina’s application for membership in February 2016 is a positive indication that the enlargement process is alive”, said Kalniete.

“However, EU enlargement is and will be a long-lasting process requiring strong political commitment by the candidates and their ability to establish good neighbourly relations and to enhance regional cooperation instead of merely competing with each other”, she insisted.

“As the case of Turkey has shown us, rule of law issues continue to be a persistent challenge and we need adequate tools to respond to these challenges and be tough when European values are put into question”, said Cristian Preda.

Preda also welcomed the changes to the methodology proposed in this year’s Enlargement Package for future enlargement processes and stressed the need for proper democratic oversight: “The EPP Group supports further refinement and recalibrating of the methodology for enlargement that will enable us to better assess evolutions in candidate and potential candidate countries. At the same time, we must imagine a form of enhanced dialogue with the European Parliament next year, in the absence of the annual European Commission’s reports, in order to ensure proper parliamentary oversight of the European integration of these countries”, he concluded. [Source.]


We must maintain an active and committed EU enlargement policy

09/11/2016 – The S&D Group in the European Parliament continues to actively support the aspirations of the Western Balkans countries for EU accession and the related reforms strengthening democratic institutions and the rule of law.

European Socialists and Democrats urge the European Commission and the Council to maintain a committed and ambitious EU enlargement policy in order to sustain the reform momentum and reinforce democracy, stability and prosperity in the Western Balkans. We cannot allow this process to slow down. While there has been good progress made with the adoption of important pieces of legislation in several candidate countries, their focus must now be on implementation.

On the occasion of today’s presentation of the enlargement package by the European Commission, the S&Ds are hosting sister parties and trade unionists from the Western Balkans to discuss current challenges of the accession process, both for the EU as well as related to the domestic situation in the candidate countries. Participants stress the social dimension of the enlargement process; it must guarantee better social standards and decent work for all.

S&D vice-president Knut Fleckenstein, who is also the European Parliament’s standing rapporteur on Albania and one of three EP mediators for the crisis in former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, said:

“The S&Ds have always been committed to an active, credible and progressive enlargement policy. We need a committed EU enlargement policy more

than ever.

“This July, the Albanian Parliament passed crucial constitutional amendments which pave the way for an ambitious and comprehensive judiciary reform. The focus must now be on implementation of that reform. I welcome that the European Commission recognized these important achievements by recommending the opening of accession negotiations while expecting Albania to continue implementation, especially with the vetting of its judiciary.

“Regarding FYR of Macedonia, the conduct of early elections on 11 December and the fulfilment of the so-called Urgent Reform Priorities will show whether the country can get back on track towards EU accession. Attempts to undermine the work of the Special Prosecutor, appointed to investigate the mass illegal wiretapping which triggered the current political crisis, must end.”

S&D vice-president Tanja Fajon added:

“It is absolutely vital for both the Western Balkans and the EU that enlargement continues. Without clear commitment on both sides, we fear dangerous scenarios of destabilisation. Urgent reforms are needed. Serbia and Kosovo need to revive the dialogue on normalisation of the relations between the countries and bring fresh and sincere energy into the process. Responsible politicians need to understand that reforms are necessary for a better life for citizens, more efficient work of institutions, preventing brain drain and building a corruption-free society.

“Serbia has to speed up the reforms in rule of law, including the fight against corruption, strengthening democracy and freedom of expression. A change of rhetoric is needed in the overall accession process. It is about making citizens understand that the enlargement process brings tangible results. I hope Kosovo soon enters a visa free regime once the last remaining conditions are met. We fully support free travel for all citizens of the Western Balkans with respect of the obligations. More EU focus is needed on the discussion about the future of BiH and better functioning of its institutions.

“I call on all the Western Balkans leaders to refrain from using nationalism-powered rhetoric and playing an ethnic card. It is time for taking courageous decisions, implementing smart reforms and making joint efforts. Citizens of the Western Balkans countries deserve no less than this and responsibility for this lies in the Western Balkans leaders’ hands.”

soc [Source.]


Turkey progress report: European Commission fails to ask for a halt in accession talks

In its progress report on Turkey the European Commission presents a detailed overview of the serious deterioration of rule of law and democracy in Turkey. However, the Commission failed to draw the appropriate political conclusions: to propose the suspension of negotiations and articulate clear criteria under which these can be resumed again.

MEP Hans van Baalen (VVD, The Netherlands), ALDE AFET co-ordinator

“The negotiations with Turkey on EU membership are at a dead end. Turkey is drifting away from democracy, the rule of law and fundamental freedoms, including free speech and media freedom. On the other hand, EU-Turkey cooperation is vital to manage the refugee crisis and stabilise the situation in Northern Syria and Iraq. We should maintain close co-operation with our neighbour Turkey and invest in contacts with the forces of reason and democracy in this country.”

ALDE MEP Alexander Lambsdorff (FDP, Germany) Vice-President of the European Parliament for Human Rights and Democracy, and ALDE shadow rapporteur on Turkey,

“Today’s progress report on Turkey should be a wake-up call for European leaders. The report draws devastating conclusions on the state of democracy in Turkey. Therefore, we must end the accession negotiations with Turkey and replace them with a new and positive agenda based on mutual respect and co-operation. This step is not only necessary and reasonable, but in the interest of both sides. An authoritarian governed Turkey cannot continue to be a candidate country for membership of the EU. As Liberals we will support democratic forces and civil society in Turkey.”

Rapport d’état d’avancement sur la Turquie : la Commission européenne échoue à demander l’arrêt des négociations d’adhésion

Dans son rapport d’activité sur la Turquie, la Commission européenne présente une vue d’ensemble détaillée de la grave détérioration de l’Etat de droit et de la démocratie en Turquie. Cependant, la Commission n’a pas réussi à tirer les conclusions politiques qui s’imposaient : proposer la suspension des négociations et formuler des critères clairs selon lesquels celles-ci peuvent redémarrer.

Hans van Baalen (VVD, Pays-Bas), coordinateur de l’ALDE au sein de la commission AFET

“Les négociations avec la Turquie sur l’adhésion à l’UE sont dans une impasse car la Turquie s’éloigne dangereusement de la démocratie, de l’Etat de droit et des libertés fondamentales, y compris la liberté d’expression et la liberté des médias. D’autre part, la coopération UE-Turquie est essentielle pour gérer la crise des réfugiés et stabiliser la situation en Syrie du Nord et en Irak. Nous devrions maintenir une coopération étroite avec notre voisin Turc et investir dans des contacts avec les forces de la raison et de la démocratie dans ce pays”.

Alexander Lambsdorff (FDP, Allemagne), vice-président du Parlement européen pour les droits de l’homme et la démocratie et porte-parole de l’ADLE sur la Turquie

“Le rapport d’état d’avancement d’aujourd’hui sur la Turquie devrait constituer une sonnette d’alarme pour les dirigeants européens. Le rapport tire des conclusions dévastatrices sur l’état de la démocratie en Turquie. Par conséquent, nous devons mettre fin aux négociations d’adhésion avec la Turquie et les remplacer par un nouvel agenda positif basé sur le respect mutuel et la coopération. Cette étape est non seulement nécessaire et raisonnable, mais elle est dans l’intérêt des deux parties. Une Turquie autoritaire ne peut pas continuer à être un pays candidat à l’adhésion à l’UE. En tant que démocrates et libéraux, nous soutiendrons les forces démocratiques et la société civile en Turquie.” [Source.]



The European Commission will present today its annual report on Turkey’s progress on EU membership.

Commenting ahead of the report, Greens/EFA co-president Rebecca Harms said:

“The EU and its Member States must strongly condemn the recent arrests and call on the Turkish government to restore human rights and the rule of law.

“Accession negotiations with Turkey must be put on hold for as long as the regime continues to flout fundamental rights. This would be consistent with what was agreed by Member States in the 2005 principles governing the negotiations with Turkey.

“It is also clear that visa liberalisation will be impossible so long as the Turkish government fails to respect the necessary conditions.”

Green EU-Turkey relations spokesperson Bodil Valeroadded:

“So long as the EU-Turkey deal is the only response to the refugee crisis, the Member States leave themselves dependent on President Erdogan. If we want to solve the refugee crisis, the EU must take matters into its own hands. Member States should finally fulfil their commitments on the resettlement of refugees and the EU must stop returning refugees to Turkey.

“We Greens will continue to raise the matter and to support the opposition and others who stand up for human rights, press freedom and rule of law in Turkey. We will call for a debate in the European Parliament on the current situation of HDP and an official delegation of the European Parliament to Turkey.”


La Commission européenne présente aujourd’hui son rapport de progrès relatif aux négociations d’adhésion de la Turquie à l’Union européenne.

Commentaires de :
Philippe LAMBERTS, Président du groupe Verts-ALE :

« L’UE ainsi que ses États doivent condamner sans équivoque les arrestations arbitraires et demander la restauration de l’État de droit.

Les négociations d’adhésion devraient être mises en sourdine aussi longtemps que le régime d’Erdogan continuera à flouer les droits humains. Ceci serait conforme aux principes régissant les négociations d’adhésion adoptés en 2005 par les États membres.

Et il va de soi que la demande de libéralisation des visas ne peut être satisfaite tant que les critères requis ne seront pas remplis. »

Eva JOLY, membre Verts-ALE de la Commission Justice et affaires intérieures :

« L’accord entre l’UE et la Turquie sur les réfugiés a instauré une dépendance des Européens à l’égard d’Erdogan. S’ils veulent réellement résoudre cette crise migratoire, ils doivent pleinement assumer leurs responsabilités. Les États membres doivent respecter leurs engagements sur l’accueil des réfugiés et interrompre leur renvoi en Turquie.

Notre groupe continuera de se mobiliser pour soutenir celles et ceux qui défendent la démocratie et les droits humains en Turquie, y compris les partis d’opposition.

Notre groupe demandera un débat en plénière sur la situation du parti HDP victime de répression et l’envoi d’une délégation officielle du Parlement en Turquie. »


Die Europäische Kommission stellt heuten den Fortschrittsbericht zur Türkei vor. Dazu sagt die Vorsitzende der Grünen/EFA-Fraktion, Rebecca Harms:

“Es ist richtig, dass die EU-Kommission die Situation in der Türkei klar kritisiert. Auch die Regierungen in den Mitgliedsstaaten müssen die erneute Verhaftungswelle in der Türkei scharf verurteilen und die türkische Regierung auffordern, Prinzipien von Menschenrechten und Rechtsstaatlichkeit zu respektieren. Die Beitrittsverhandlungen mit der Türkei müssen auf Eis gelegt werden, solange das Regime in Ankara Menschenrechte mit Füßen tritt. Dies entspricht der Entscheidung, die die Mitgliedsstaaten im Oktober 2005 in den Prinzipien für die Verhandlungen mit der Türkei getroffen haben (1). Auch die Visaliberalisierung darf es nur geben, wenn die türkische Regierungen alle Bedingungen dafür erfüllt. Trotz alledem bleibt es richtig, die Dialogmöglichkeiten mit der Türkei aufrecht zu erhalten.”

Die stellvertretende Fraktionsvorsitzende und Mitglied der EU-Türkei-Delegation, Ska Keller, fügt hinzu:

“Solange der Türkei-Deal die einzige Antwort der Europäischen Union auf die Flüchtlingskrise ist, machen sich die Mitgliedsstaaten abhängig vom türkischen Präsidenten Erdogan. Wenn wir die Flüchtlingskrise wirklich lösen wollen, müssen die Regierungen selbst Verantwortung übernehmen. Sie müssen ihre Versprechen zum Resettlement endlich erfüllen und dürfen keine Flüchtlinge mehr in die Türkei zurückschicken.

Wir werden weiter die Opposition und alle, die sich in der Türkei für Menschenrechte und Pressefreiheit einsetzen, unterstützen. Wir fordern eine Debatte im Europäischen Parlament zur Situation der HDP und eine offizielle Delegation des Europäischen Parlament in die Türkei.”

(1) Ratsentscheidung vom 3. Oktober 2005; Artikel 5 [Source.]


The arrest of ten HDP parliamentarians jeopardises the functioning of democracy

09/11/2016, Strasbourg – The PACE Monitoring Committee expresses its deep concern at the latest developments in Turkey in the wake of the failed coup d’état of 15 July 2016, which it firmly condemned.

The arrest of ten parliamentarians belonging to the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) since 4 November 2016 – including the party’s co-chairs Selahattin Demirtas and Figen Yüksekdag – as well as the detention of the co-Mayors of Diyarbakir and several others is extremely worrisome and jeopardises the functioning of democracy. All these elected representatives should thus immediately be released. This reinforces the concerns already expressed by the Assembly in June 2016 in its Resolution 2121 (2016) after the immunity of 139 Members of Parliament was lifted, jeopardising MPs’ freedom of expression as guaranteed by the European Convention on Human Rights. The committee also refers to the last opinion adopted by the Venice Commission, which has critcised the timing and rationae of that procedure.

The committee raises serious questions about the implementation of the state of emergency, notably the continuous and massive dismissal of civil servants and members of the judiciary and the consequences of the measures contained in the decree-laws on fundamental freedoms and fair trials, which will result in numerous complaints being lodged with the European Court of Human Rights, should Turkey fail to redress these shortcomings and ensure effective legal remedies. The arrests of leading journalists from Cumhuriyet – for their alleged support to the PKK and the Gülen Movement – the recent closure of an additional 15 Kurdish media and the restrictions imposed on the autonomy of the universities have further contributed to silencing critical voices and creating a climate of fear, suspicion and polarisation.

Finally, the committee is dismayed by the renewed discussions about the reintroduction of the death penalty in Turkey, which is incompatible with membership of the Council of Europe.

The Monitoring Committee is fully aware of the challenges posed to the country by the continuous terrorist attacks and the adverse geopolitical context. However, it urges Turkey to refrain from taking any initiatives that could erode the country’s fulfillment of its obligations toward the Council of Europe. The committee expects the state of emergency to be lifted at the earliest possible date, and demands the full application and respect of the European Convention on Human Rights.

l’Arrestation de dix députés du HDP met en péril le fonctionnement des institutions démocratiques

La Commission de suivi fait part de sa vive préoccupation face aux développements récents intervenus en Turquie après le coup d’état manqué du 15 juillet 2016, qu’elle a fermement condamné.

L’arrestation, depuis le 4 novembre 2016, de dix députés du Parti démocratique des peuples (HDP) – dont ses coprésidents, Selahattin Demirtas et Figen Yüksekdag – ainsi que le placement en détention provisoire des deux co-maires de Diyarbakir et d’autres maires sont extrêmement inquiétants et mettent en péril le fonctionnement des institutions démocratiques. Tous ces représentants élus doivent, de ce fait, être immédiatement relâchés. Ces développements ne font que renforcer les préoccupations formulées par l’Assemblée dès le mois de juin 2016 dans sa Résolution 2121 (2016), à la suite de la décision de la Turquie de lever l’immunité de 139 parlementaires, qui compromet la liberté d’expression des députés garantie par la Convention européenne des droits de l’homme. La commission renvoie également au, dernier avis adopté par la Commission de Venise qui a critiqué le calendrier et les rationae de cette procédure.

La commission s’interroge sérieusement sur la mise en œuvre de l’état d’urgence, notamment sur les révocations massives et continues de fonctionnaires et de membres de l’appareil judiciaire, ainsi que sur les conséquences des mesures contenues dans les décrets lois en matière de libertés fondamentales et de procès équitables, qui entraîneront l’introduction de nombreuses requêtes devant la Cour européenne des droits de l’homme si la Turquie ne remédie pas à ces défaillances et ne garantit pas des recours effectifs. L’arrestation de journalistes de Cumhuriyet – soupçonnés de connivence avec le PKK et le mouvement de Gülen –, la fermeture récente de 15 nouveaux médias kurdes et les restrictions imposées à l’autonomie des universités n’ont fait que contribuer à réduire au silence les voix dissidentes et à créer un climat de peur, de suspicion et de polarisation.

Enfin, la commission est consternée par la reprise des débats sur la réintroduction en Turquie de la peine capitale, qui est incompatible avec la qualité d’Etat membre du Conseil de l’Europe.

La Commission de suivi est bien consciente des problèmes de la Turquie, qui est confrontée à des attentats répétés et à un contexte géopolitique défavorable. Cependant, elle invite instamment la Turquie à s’abstenir de toute initiative susceptible d’éroder l’exécution de ses obligations envers le Conseil de l’Europe. Elle demande la levée de l’état d’urgence dans les plus brefs délais, et exige la pleine application et le plein respect de la Convention européenne des droits de l’homme.

La commission demande par conséquent aux corapporteures de l’Assemblée parlementaire, de suivre de près la situation de la Turquie et de se rendre sur place dans les meilleurs délais. [Source]



Bizde olanlar beyleri endişelendiriyor ya, ben de şimdi buradan onlara bir yollama yapıyorum; bu gelişmeler bizi endişelendiriyor. Çünkü iyi yolda değilsiniz. Günümüz dünyasında hiç kimse, kendisini layüsel göremez, yerkürenin kalanından soyutlayamaz

Çünkü bizim Batı ile çok yakın ilişkilerimiz var. Her şeyden önce, Balkanlarda ve Avrupa’da milyonlarca soydaşımız, dindaşımız yaşıyor. Bunların her birinin sosyal, kültürel, siyasal, ekonomik meseleleri, bizim meselemizdir. Aynı şekilde, Türkiye olarak ihracatımızın yaklaşık yarısını EURO bölgesine yapıyoruz. Bir başka ifadeyle, ekonomik olarak da Batı ile asla gözden çıkartmayacağımız, vazgeçmeyeceğimiz ilişkilerimiz var. Bu bakımdan, Avrupa Birliği’yle ve Batı coğrafyasıyla ilgili endişelerimiz samimidir, tespitlerimiz samimidir, tekliflerimiz samimidir. Biz rol yapmıyoruz, riya yapmıyoruz. Biz demokrasi kılıfı altında terör destekçiliği yapılmasına karşı çıkarken, kendi istikbalimizle, kendi çıkarlarımızla birlikte, muhataplarımızın geleceğini de düşünüyoruz. İşte bu anlayışla, hakikatleri anlatmaya devam edeceğiz Cumhurbaşkanı Recep Tayyip Erdoğan [Tam Metin.]


I wonder what their stand would be like if Turkey opened its doors to the terrorists of the West in their understanding. I want them to know that it will hit them like a boomerang. You declare the PKK as a terrorist organization while you open the doors of the European Parliament to PKK’s leaders and members.”

“Issues that are not even raised when it comes to other countries, conditions that are ignored become essential when it comes to Turkey. The most recent example of this understanding was experienced during the visa liberation talks and about the fight against terror. They shamelessly say that Turkey’s EU negotiations should be reviewed. You are late. Review it as soon as possible. But do not just review, make your final decision. President Erdogan [Full Text]


AB Adına Yüksek Temsilci Tarafından Türkiye’deki Son Gelişmeler” Başlıklı Beyan Hk

AB adına Dış İlişkiler ve Güvenlik Politikası Yüksek Temsilcisi tarafından bugün ülkemiz hakkında yapılan açıklamanın kabul edilmesi mümkün değildir.

Darbe teşebbüsünden bu yana beklediğimiz desteği vermeyen ve önyargılı bir tutum sergileyen AB maalesef terörizmle mücadele konusunda da Türkiye’nin hassasiyetlerini anlamamakta ısrar etmektedir. AB, ülkemizdeki terör saldırılarını kınamakla bu konuda üzerine düşen sorumluluklardan kurtulamayacağını anlamalıdır.

PKK’ya açıkça silahı bırakma çağrısı yapamayan, teröristlerin serbestçe ülkelerinde dolaşmalarına ve Türkiye aleyhine propaganda ve eylemlerini yürütmelerine ses çıkarmayan ve hatta PKK’nın Avrupa Parlamentosu koridorlarında sergi açmasına müsaade eden, Türkiye sözkonusu olunca terörizmi silahlı mücadele şeklinde yansıtan kararlara imza atan AB esasen Türk milleti nezdinde terörle mücadele konusundaki inandırıcılığını ve itibarını kaybetmiştir.

Bu sebeple, bu tür açıklamaların bizim açımızdan bir değeri bulunmamaktadır.


Regarding the Statement of Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, about the Latest Developments in Turkey

The statement of Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, released today (8 November) on Turkey cannot be accepted.

The EU has not given the expected support to Turkey and has adopted a prejudiced attitude since the attempted coup. Unfortunately, the EU still insists on not understanding the sensitivities of Turkey regarding the fight against terrorism. The EU should comprehend that by condemning terrorist attacks in Turkey, it cannot escape from its responsibilities on this issue.

The EU can neither make a clear call to PKK to lay down arms, nor object to terrorists’ free movement, carrying out propaganda and acts against Turkey in EU countries. Moreover, the EU has even allowed PKK to open exhibitions in the corridors of the European Parliament, and depicted terrorism as an armed struggle, when Turkey is the subject. Thus, the EU has already lost its credibility and reputation for the Turkish people regarding the fight against terrorism.

For this reason, such statements have no value for Turkey. [Kaynak/Source.]


Objektiflikten ve gerçekleri yansıtmaktan uzak bir rapor.

AB’nin üzerine kurulu olduğu hukukun üstünlüğünü, insan haklarına saygıyı ve demokrasiyi içselleştirmiş olan halkımızın bu mücadelesini AB ile
paylaştığımız sözkonusu ortak değerler açısından yeni bir kazanım olarak gördük. Bu yüzden de bu yılki Raporun, son dönemde Türkiye-AB birlikteliğini pekiştiren ve müzakere sürecimizin önünü açan bir yol haritası olmasını temenni ederdik. Ancak ne yazık ki 2016 Türkiye Raporu, ülkemizin AB sürecinin ve reform çalışmalarının ilerlemesinde yapıcı ve yol gösterici bir rol üstlenmekten çok uzak bir belgedir. Rapor, Türkiye-AB ilişkilerine hizmet etmeyen bir anlayışla yazılmıştır.

Türkiye’de temel insan hak ve özgürlüklerine gereken saygı gösterilmekte, hukukun üstünlüğü ilkesine kesinlikle uyulmaktadır. Önyargılı bir tutum sergileyen AB terörizmle mücadele konusunda da Türkiye’nin hassasiyetlerini anlamamakta ısrar etmektedir. Ülkemizde bir iç savaş varmış algısının yaratılmasını, AB’nin terör konusundaki çifte standardı olarak görüyoruz.

Türkiye bir hukuk devletidir, hukuk önünde hiç kimsenin ayrıcalığı yoktur. Bağımsız yargı da milli iradeyi tehdit eden yapılara karşı gerekli soruşturmaları yürüterek temel görevini yerine getirmektedir. AB siyasi kriterler alanında bu denli yoğun eleştiriler yöneltip beklenti ve tavsiyelerini sıralarken, 23. Yargı ve Temel Haklar ve 24. Adalet, Özgürlük ve Güvenlik fasıllarının müzakerelere açılmamasını anlamakta güçlük çekiyoruz. Bunca eleştiriye rağmen katılım müzakerelerinde 23. ve 24. fasılların halen blokaj altında olması gerçek bir siyasi sorumsuzluktur. Söz konusu fasıllarla ilgili konuların içeriğini katılım müzakereleri çerçevesinde tartışabileceğimiz somut bir platform olmadığı takdirde, AB’nin bu alandaki eleştirilerini Türkiye’nin üyeliğini engellemeye yönelik “bahaneler” olarak değerlendireceğiz.

Stratejik hedefimiz olan AB’ye üyelik yolunda, gerekli reformları geçmişte olduğu gibi bugün de hayata geçirme konusunda kararlıyız. Bugün Türkiye ile AB arasında yeni köprüler kurma ve diyalog mekanizmalarımızı güçlendirme zamanıdır. Türkiye-AB ilişkileri için bütün alanları fırsata dönüştürebiliriz. Yapıcı eleştiriler ve pozitif bir yaklaşımla yepyeni bir dönem açabiliriz. Yeter ki ilişkilerimizde uzlaşıyı, karşılıklı anlayışı ve hoşgörüyü ön plana çıkaracak yapıcı bir dil kullanalım ve diyaloğumuzun güçlendirilmesi için ortak çaba sarf etmeyi sürdürelim. AB’nin Türkiye hakkında verdiği her karar, aslında kendi hakkında verdiği karardır. AB, Türkiye’nin üyeliği meselesinin artık Türkiye’nin geleceği meselesi olmaktan çıktığını, AB’nin ve bölgenin geleceği meselesi haline geldiğini kavramak durumundadır. Avrupa’nın geleceğine giden yolda aynı gemide olduğumuz bilinciyle ortak akılla hareket etmeliyiz. [AB Bakanı Ömer Çelik’in açıklamasının tam metni.]


The Report is far from objectivity and does not reflect the facts.

We would have expected that this year’s report would be a road map reinforcing the Turkey-EU association and paving the way for the negotiation process.
However, 2016 Turkey Progress Report is quite far from playing a constructive and leading role for further progress in Turkey’s EU process and its reform efforts. Report, which has been written in a tone distant from the accession negotiations perspective and which doesn’t present any concrete proposals in various areas of cooperation, has been drafted with an understanding that doesn’t serve the Turkey- EU relations well.

The EU must be aware of the fact that Turkey, whilst fighting with this serious threat against its democracy, continues its commitments to human rights, principle of rule of law, and to the obligations of international conventions. Turkey is a state governed by the rule of law and no one is privileged before the law. Turkey undertakes one of its main obligations by carrying out investigations into structures that threaten the independence of the judiciary and the national will.

We find it difficult to understand why, while the EU sets forth such serious criticisms and lists its expectations and recommendations, Chapter 23 on Judiciary and Fundamental Rights and Chapter 24 on Justice, Freedom and Security have not been opened to accession negotiations. The political blocks on Chapters 23 and 24 in the accession negotiations despite all criticisms indicate political irresponsibility. In the absence of a platform to discuss matters in these chapters within the framework of the accession negotiations, we will consider the criticisms set out by the EU in these areas only as “excuses” to prevent Turkey from becoming a member.

It is time to build new bridges between Turkey and the EU and to strengthen our dialogue mechanism. We might turn all areas into an advantage for Turkey-EU relations. We can start a new period of constructive criticism and positive attitudes. It is very important to speak constructively, which will feature conciliation, mutual understanding and tolerance and to exert joint efforts to consolidate our dialogue. It should not be forgotten that every decision that the EU takes about Turkey is actually a decision that it takes regarding itself. The EU needs to understand that Turkey’s EU membership is not an issue of Turkey’s future, rather an issue of the EU and whole region’s future. [Statement of the EU Affairs Minister Omer Celik – Full Text]

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