Published: Thu, March 29, 2018
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

Putin, Erdogan will attend Akkuyu groundbreaking next week: Turkish PM

Putin, Erdogan will attend Akkuyu groundbreaking next week: Turkish PM

"EU membership continues to be our strategic goal", Erdogan told reporters before departing for the summit.

The most recent major new disagreement occurred two weeks ago when Turkey sent warships to block gas and oil exploration in Cyprus' Exclusive Economic Zone.

"Turkey has committed to developing and upholding the highest standards of democracy", the European Council president said. But relations are complicated because Turkey, which started negotiating European Union membership in 2005, has imprisoned more than 50,000 people, including journalists, academics and opposition politicians, in widespread purges since the attempted coup. The EU should support its member states.

Juncker said it had been a meeting with "mixed feelings but not mixed messages".

Turkey will take action if Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) do not withdraw immediately from Syria's Manbij region, Turkish National Security Council (MGK) said on Wednesday. Ankara considers the YPG to be a terrorist organization, but the US, despite identifying the PKK as a terror group, does not extend the classification to the terror group's Syrian branch.

But Juncker stressed that the European Union showed its support for Erdogan merely hours after the attempted putsch began.

It would be a grave mistake for Europe, which claims to be a global force, to push Turkey out of its expansion policy.

"Our operations against terrorism do not just contribute to our and the Syrians' security, but to Europe's security as well", Erdogan said.

However he added: "We don't want rambling or unfair criticisms on sensitive issues like the fight against terror".

But Erdogan struck a more optimistic tone, telling reporters: "We hope that we have left a very hard period behind in Turkey-EU relations".

The two Greek military officials held in Turkey for nearly four weeks will remain in custody for the time being, according to the decision by a Turkish prosecutor on Tuesday, Skai TV reported.

Like this: