Turkey and EU Friction [VIDEO]
Turkey and EU Friction [VIDEO]
Turkey and the European Union came away from their summit this afternoon with nothing concrete accomplished. For the Europeans, there have been no answers or movement on any of their civil/human rights concerns. As for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan?
In a post-summit press conference, he pointed out all he wants is Turkish membership in the EU. And he wants it yesterday.
“I mention that we first asked to join in 1963. We are still a candidate and we’d like things to progress quickly.”
He was a good deal more heated in comments he made prior to leaving for the summit and that rattled European cages:
TURKEY has demanded EU membership, with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan increasing tensions with Brussels by warning officials ignoring Ankara would be “a big mistake”.
Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned EU officials today he expected inclusion in talks regarding the bloc’s expansion.
Erdogan said excluding Turkey from such talks would be a “big mistake” and demanded more support from the EU.
He said Turkey’s efforts to curb extremism should be “supported, not criticised” and also called for increased visa liberalisation for Turkish citizens in Europe.
Jean-Claude Juncker [EU President] appeared to immediately fold, conceding cutting off Turkey’s accession talks with the EU would be “simple but superficial”.
Hard as is it to visualize Europeans “folding,” well, there it is. Plus, reality was smacking them in the face with a hard, wet burqua. As much as they despise the depostic Erdogan they badly need him to keep up with his refugee interventions, whatever the cost to the EU. Every boatload his military can drag back to Turkey is one less starving, bedraggled boatload landing somewhere in an overburdened Mediterranean state. Along with revisiting the payment schedule of the 2016 migrant agreement, Turkey and Germany managed to work out an updated agreement:
All migrants and refugees arriving in Greece from this Sunday (20 March) will be returned to Turkey, under a controversial agreement hammered out over two days between the EU and Ankara at a summit in Brussels.
They have to keep stringing this guy along, because they’re desperate on the migrant front. Turkey is still the last bulwark between Europe and the madness that is the Middle East. At one time, a moderate, secular Turkey stood a good chance of finally seeing that prized EU member ring in its hand. But Erdogan’s continuing slide into strict adherence to Islamic principles and his brutal, on-going crackdown since the failed coup attempt have given the white gloved diplomats at the Hague the vapors.
Despite criticism from European governments of what many view as Erdogan’s growing authoritarianism, EU leaders left the door open to Turkey’s stalled bid for membership to the bloc, but said only he could act to remove the obstacles to accession.“I raised all our concerns, as you know it was a long list”, European Council President Donald Tusk told reporters after the talks held in the Black Sea port city of Varna.
“If you are asking me if we achieved some solutions or compromises – my answer is: no,” he added. “Our position is clear – only progress on these issues will allow us to improve EU-Turkey relations, including the accession process”…
…Turkey shares borders with Iraq and Syria as well as influence with Russia in the Black Sea region, but the EU is still its biggest foreign investor and trading partner.
EU leaders cited these geostrategic interest as common ground for greater cooperation with Turkey, despite differences.
Europeans are both pissed off and squeamish about Erdogan, but hamstrung how to deal with his authoritarian act. Angela Merkel had her hands full in August’s election, and it wasn’t Russians. Erdogan “influenced” ex-pat Turks living in Germany: