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EUROPE > German minister’s EU remarks on Turkey ‘unacceptable’

ANKARA / DUSSELDORF

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Germany's Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble talks with journalists as he arrives for a Eurogroup meeting in Luxembourg, June 20. AP photo

Germany's Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble talks with journalists as he arrives for a Eurogroup meeting in Luxembourg, June 20. AP photo

Turkey should not join the European Union because it is not part of Europe, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said July 3, bluntly underlining Berlin’s opposition to Ankara’s long-running membership bid while prompting an immediate reaction from Turkish officials.

“We should not accept Turkey as a full member ... Turkey is not part of Europe,” Schaeuble said at an election rally in Düsseldorf.

Schaeuble’s remarks are “extremely unacceptable and groundless,” said a senior Turkish diplomat, adding that he was unable to “read either Europe or Turkey” and was unaware of the institutional relationship between the EU and Turkey.

Germany pressed the 28-member bloc to delay a new round of membership talks last week, in response to Ankara’s crackdown on anti-government Gezi Park protesters. Brussels postponed the negotiations until fall, but said the path to Turkey’s membership was still open.

Merkel’s critics have accused her of making a show of her opposition to Turkey’s membership to curry favor with conservative voters before elections, scheduled for September.

Turkey became an associate of the bloc in the 1960s but accession talks launched in 2005 became bogged down in a dispute over Greek Cyprus and opposition from Paris and Berlin.

‘Do not reflect reality’

“These kinds of expressions cannot be accepted, furthermore, they don’t reflect the reality either. The history, the values and the prospect of a common future; these are all factual aspects which prove that a Europe without Turkey is unthinkable, unimaginable,” the senior diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Hürriyet Daily News today.

“Although the pace is down, still, the institutional relationship is on track, with one more negotiation chapter having been opened just recently. The full EU membership is still a strategic goal for us,” the diplomat said. “I do not know what the basis of Mr. Schaeuble’s assumption is; this is a question which should be answered by him. Yet, one should not forget that such assumptions are not befitting the contractual basis of the relationship between Turkey and the EU and should not also forget the principle of pacta sunt servanda [a principle of international law which means in Latin that agreements must be kept],” he said.

July/03/2013

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READER COMMENTS

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Ken Alden

7/27/2013 6:57:01 AM

@Mara, If one only considers material side of daily life, it is easier to raise a child in more advanced countries, but nothing will substitute for a fair and caring parent, who teaches the hild to share, to be tollerant, respectful and polite and motiveted student! A child deserves and has the right to parental respect as an individual,. needing love and gentle guidance to build a basis for self0esteem. In the end if one does not respect himself, no one willdo so! Good luck to you and yours!

mara mcglothin

7/11/2013 6:42:23 PM

KEN No not Texas, but close, the home state of Bill Clinton! And I don't raise my family in Turkey. My Turkish husband chose to live in the good ol' US of A, as I would have followed him anywhere! BUT we do spend quite a lot of time in Turkey and even our son considers himself a Turk. We had to talk him out of having the Turkish flag tattoed on his arm last year! As a World traveler, I raised him to value both his American as well as his Turkish heritages.

Ken Alden

7/11/2013 2:56:50 PM

@Mara, agood soup of ones choice is heaven, particularly on a cold winter day, I like Russian style Broscht with a healthy dallop of Souercream and Rye bread.So you are a Southern Belle from the Deep South, Texas Panhandle, perhaps? Now that you have chosed Turkey as you home to raise a family, why not be more positive about it? About Folklores and beliefs, the German proverb comes to mind "Andere Laender, andere Sitten" meaning "Other lands, other Customs" certainly does apply in this case!

mara mcglothin

7/10/2013 5:31:16 PM

KEN Chicken and also potato soup are great home remedies for colds BECAUSE of scientific facts, BUT walking barefoot in your house will not make you infertile and a cool breeze will NOT make you ill. I don't dump on anyone. I love Turkey and only want the best for the country. I don't look down my nose at anyone. I am from small town southern America, so I have been looked down upon myself. Just get it straight, I only want the best for Turkey, and if criticism is bad, then I'm guilty.

Ken Alden

7/10/2013 8:06:43 AM

@Mara, I'y calls then as I'y sees them and thats how it looks to me, so if you areen't dumping, are you looking down yoyr nose, better yet let's forget the whole thing. On account of sheevers, you stated the solution but you did't see it; those people who get sheevers, must have a compromised immune system! Getting to reality of how the things work in this World,there is no medical evidence, nevertless the Chicken Soup is a good remedy for many ills, yess my Doctor is Jewish.

mara mcglothin

7/9/2013 4:56:14 PM

Yeah, KEN Just goes to show there are people who believe in fairy tales all over the World! As to "dumping on Turks and Turkey" are you serious. I am a Turk by marriage and have a son who is half Turkish, so why would I dump on Turks????? You must have asked a Jewish or Turkish MD! LOL There is no medical fact to this at all. I can go out in the cold Winter with wet hair, and unless I have a compromised immune system that even won't make me ill.

Ken Alden

7/9/2013 2:06:52 PM

@Mara, Strange as it may soiund to you, I too believe that a cool breeze on a warm balmy day may or night may cause you shiever or even a "Nesselah" .(Yideesh for temp. sneeffles) The cause of such an reaction was explained to me by an MD, is probable sudden cooling of a warm moist skin by the cool breeze. Dumping on Turks and Turkey is an obsession of Your's, so i am taking it a smile and a chuckle, have nice hunting dear Mara!

mara mcglothin

7/7/2013 8:46:48 PM

VARGEN Regardless of what the Anatolian says, we all know that regardless of background and education, the majority of Turks still believe that a cool breeze on a warm summer day will make you ill! It is what it is.

Hans-Joachim "Terrorist" Zierke

7/7/2013 7:14:13 PM

dennis kavaz, because Germans will accept Turkey as soon as it passes the duck test as a European democracy. (If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck…) If it makes peace with its minorities, gets rid of child brides and arranged marriage (yes, I'm aware of a much lower % today), shows average homophobia, no longer forces media into government affiliation, or gasses peaceful protesters, jails without trial or for criticising politicians, etc… the Germans will accept. Schäuble won't.

dennis kavaz

7/7/2013 10:02:04 AM

Well OK Mr. Wolfgang Schaeuble if the E U membership was only applicable only to the European nations, why has the E U lead Turkey believing (all these years) that Turkey was not to be accepted because Turkey wasn’t able to fulfil the E U criterion instead?
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