Freezing or suspension of EU talks will be regarded as breaking negotiations: Çelik

Freezing or suspension of EU talks will be regarded as breaking negotiations: Çelik

ANKARA
Freezing or suspension of EU talks will be regarded as breaking negotiations: Çelik

Ankara will regard any attempt to freeze or suspend accession talks as a breaking of the negotiation process, Turkey’s EU Minister Ömer Çelik has said.

“Talking about freezing or suspending relations between the EU and Turkey, a big strategic power and a great state, is not a simple job. So let me declare it for the first time: We will regard any move to freeze or suspend [accession talks] as a breaking of negotiations,” Çelik told private broadcaster A Haber on Sept. 26.
 
He said Turkey would not accept a relationship with the EU that stipulates the continuation of “transactional ties” but a suspension of the accession process, after a number of EU countries expressed willingness to put an end to Ankara’s full membership talks. 

Discussions on the future of Turkey-EU ties deepened across the EU after German Chancellor Angela Merkel said her government will seek a suspension of talks with Turkey in the upcoming European Council meeting in October, repeating this stance a number of times during the recent German election campaign. 

Touching on the results of the German election, which saw the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) to enter the Bundestag for the first time, Çelik criticized both Merkel and the social democratic SPD’s leader Martin Schulz for using “similar language to ultra-nationalists.” 

He warned that Turkey-Germany ties could further deteriorate “if Merkel adopts far-right language in order to re-gain the votes she lost to the AfD.” 

“But if she draws a lesson from this picture and adopts more reasonable relations and language after the election, we are ready for this. I have told them this already,” Çelik said.

“However, I hear that the German Foreign Ministry is sending diplomats to many countries to ask what they can do against Turkey’s EU process,” he added, warning that this stance “will only help strengthen far-right parties.”

Turkey, European Union, Relations