Negotiations for Turkey’s EU membership should be halted if the government does not change its behavior on a number of areas, including the rule of law and fundamental rights, a group of bloc lawmakers said.
On Thursday, members of the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee supported a new report on Turkey’s accession to the EU with 49 votes, four against and 14 abstentions.
In their report, MEPs say EU-Turkey relations have plummeted to a “Historical low point” after Ankara has “Deliberately Spaced” by European values and undertaken a “Hostile foreign policy” towards Greece and Cyprus.
“If the current negative trend is not reversed urgently and consistently, the [European] The Commission should recommend that accession negotiations be formally suspended “, the commission said Friday in a statement on the matter.
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The committee’s report will be put to the vote of the enlarged European Parliament and, if adopted, will represent the body’s official position on the bloc’s relations with Turkey.
In recent months, EU leaders have raised new concerns over a number of issues, including Turkey’s alleged legal crackdown on the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) over its alleged ties to Kurdish militants.
Brussels and Ankara also saved money on Turkey’s gas drilling into a seabed in the disputed waters of the eastern Mediterranean, an area claimed by Greece and Cyprus.
In November, member states agreed on sanctions for Turkey’s alleged invasion of their territory.
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Ankara has repeatedly denied such claims and last month accused some EU member state governments of doing so “Accusations of narrow views” against Turkey.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has threatened to leave EU accession talks if progress is not forthcoming.
The country’s bid to join the world’s largest trading bloc began in 2005, but negotiations have stalled severely.
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