Turkey warns of rising racism on Europe Day
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Hürriyet photoXenophobia, racism and Islamophobia are threatening Europe’s own values, Turkish President Abdullah Gül said in a fresh warning to the European Union on Europe Day and advised the 27-member bloc to continue with an open vision.
“It’s my sincere wish that this threat will be prevented from gaining more ground that will lead the EU to turn further in on itself and to harm the universal values that it pioneers,” Gül said in his written statement yesterday.
Gül urged EU countries to free themselves of “baseless worries” about Turkey’s EU negotiations and to remove “the artificial barriers” raised on Turkey’s road to accession as he reaffirmed the country’s objective of full membership. Describing Turkey’s aspirations to join the EU as part of the country’s strategic vision, Gül said it was for both sides to crown Turkey’s half-century long journey with this end. A potential Turkish membership in the EU will strengthen the bloc’s global position in the fields of energy, economy, foreign policy and security, Gül said.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan also issued a statement yesterday and said the government’s efforts to increase its democratic norms through a set of reform packages were evidence of its will to join the EU.