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EU-Turkey relations: “We are entering a new phase”

Added 11/30/2016
European Parliament - 29. 11. 2016
More than 10 years after EU-Turkey accession talks started, MEPs adopted a resolution on 24 November calling for the negotiations to be suspended until the Turkish government ended its disproportionate and repressive response to July's failed coup. Ankara replied by threatening to let thousands of migrants pass through to Europe. Greek EPP member Manolis Kefalogiannis, head of Parliament’s delegation to Turkey, commented: “We are entering a new phase in EU-Turkey relations”.
Since the failed military coup in July 2016, tens of thousands of people, including military personnel, public servants, teachers and university deans, prosecutors, journalists and opposition politicians, have been fired, suspended, detained or arrested.

MEPs are concerned about the crackdown and the threat by Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan to reintroduce the death penalty.

Kefalogiannis said: “Turkey must stop exhibiting a huge democratic deficit, particularly following the coup of 15 July 2016, and it should stop considering reintroducing the death penalty. Furthermore, Turkey must adopt the EU values and standards, respect the EU acquis and stop disputing international treaties, like the Treaty of Lausanne."

A resolution adopted in plenary on 24 November calls for a temporary freeze on the EU accession negotiation until the “disproportioned repressive measures are lifted”. Dutch S&D member Kati Piri, the MEP responsible for following the accession talks, said: "I very much hope that this is a temporary thing but the key lies in the hands of the government in Turkey in order for these talks to be unfrozen."

Full text is available here