Turkey says EU ‘exercising democracy selectively’ and is wrong to stand by Netherlands
ANKARAThe Turkish Foreign Ministry on March 14 slammed the European Union for telling Ankara to “refrain from excessive statements,” saying it was grave for Brussels to stand by the Netherlands’ “violations of human rights and European values.”
In a statement on March 14, the Turkish ministry said the EU was exercising democratic values and basic rights and freedoms “selectively,” adding that its comments calling for calm had “no value” for Ankara.
“Our EU counterparts only selectively apply democratic values, fundamental rights and freedoms. While recommending dialogue channels for resolving problems, they ignore our policies pursued within the limits of diplomacy and the law, unlike the Netherlands,” the statement read.
“The EU’s short-sighted statement has no value for us. … The EU should realize that it fuels extremism, xenophobia and anti-Turkish sentiments, because the call to refrain from excessive statements is made only to Turkey, rather than to the countries that caused this situation by violating diplomatic conventions and international law,” it added.
A row over Turkish government campaigning in the Netherlands has escalated into a full-blown crisis between the two NATO allies after the Dutch authorities refused to allow Turkish ministers to allow campaigning in the country.
The European Union’s High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini and Commissioner Johannes Hahn said in a joint statement on March 13 that “the European Union calls on Turkey to refrain from excessive statements and actions that risk further exacerbating the situation. Matters of concern can only be resolved through open and direct communication channels.”
“Following the tensions of these last days between Turkey and some EU member states, it is essential to avoid further escalation and find ways to calm the situation,” it said.