Turkey criticises EU over talks

Ankara unhappy with French move to block economic and monetary negotiations.

    Ali Babacan said the talks were being
    closely watched [EPA]
    Babacan, however, said the EU's relations with Turkey were being closely watched by the rest of the world.
     
    If the EU failed to keep the objective of eventual Turkish membership in the talks, he said, "not only Turkey but the EU as well will be damaged from this, at a scale beyond its frontiers and even at global proportions".
     
    European interest
     
    The EU was keen to stress that the opening of two chapters proved membership talks were proceeding.
     
    "This is quite significant progress, and the process is well on track," said Steinmeier, who chaired the talks and whose country currently holds the rotating EU presidency.
     
    Steinmeier said Turkey's eventual entry into the 27-nation bloc "is in the interest of everyone in Europe."
     
    Turkey has already opened and closed talks with the EU on science, and opened talks on industry.
     
    Talks stalled
     
    EU legislation, which countries must implement before joining the body, is divided into 35 policy areas and there are as many chapters of talks.
     
    Special report

    A series of reports ahead of the country's parliamentary elections

    The negotiations, which were launched in October 2005, have made little progress.
     
    Talks came to a virtual standstill late last year when EU leaders decided to partially suspend negotiations in protest at Ankara's refusal to open its ports to trade with EU member Cyprus.
     
    Turkey does not recognize the government of Cyprus, which has led to a standoff between Brussels and Ankara over the membership bid.
     
    Nicolas Sarkozy, France's new president, has said he opposes Turkey's membership bid.
     
    France and Cyprus have in recent months co-operated to stall and delay progress in the entry negotiations.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    From Qatar to Alaska, a personal journey exploring what it means to belong when your culture is endangered.