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Maciamo
09-11-06, 10:32
BBC News : Brussels sets deadline for Turkey (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/6126252.stm)


The European Commission has given Turkey until mid-December to open its ports to Cypriot ships, or face unspecified consequences.

The warning is set out in a report criticising the pace of Turkish reforms in the year since EU entry talks began.

The Commission says it will make "relevant recommendations" to EU leaders if Turkey does not meet its obligations towards Cyprus.
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Turkey agreed last year to extend its customs union with the EU to Cyprus, which joined the bloc in 2004, but has not done so, with the result that Turkish ports and airports remain closed to Cypriot traffic.
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The Commission's report on Turkey raises serious concerns about allegations of torture, freedom of religion, women's and trade union rights, civilian control over the military, and the rights and freedoms of the Kurdish population.

It also says Ankara must ensure freedom of expression "without delay" by repealing or amending article 301 of the penal code, which has led to the prosecution of numerous writers for "insulting Turkishness".

Correspondents say Turks are tiring of the constant pressure from Brussels and are increasingly convinced that the EU does not see the country as a future member.

Some polls show support for EU membership plummeting as low as 30%.

I suppose that the "relevant recommendations" mean to sanction Turkey economically or pressure it politically.

This is not good for Turkey. Although I am favourable to Turkish accession, I absolutely cannot see how this is even debatable as long as Turkey blocks its port to EU ships from one member state. Turkey could have chances to join the EU if it follows all the above recommendations by the EU Commission. It is true that member states, and especially populations, may still refuse Turkish membership by referendum, but as far as the EU institutions themselves are concerned, solving the above problems will make it possible to discuss accession procedures.

ricecake
13-11-06, 08:16
Sovereignty fight over the island of Cyrus with native Cyriots is a bottleneck to Turkey's final membership acceptance in the European Union.

Duo
25-11-06, 04:33
Ah turkey can be so intransigent sometimes. True there are those here in Europe that are trying to sabotage Turkish membership, but Turkey is not doing itself favors. First off the whole issue of insulting turkishness, then refuting the Armenian genocide, is time to let all these go and look forward.