Turkish EU minister to talk ties with senior European officials
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
Turkish EU Minister Ömer Çelik is to head to Brussels on Jan. 25 for talks with top European officials, according to a written statement from the ministry on Jan. 24.
Çelik will meet European Commission First Vice-President Frans Timmermans and the EU’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini to speak about Turkey-EU relations.
Turkey applied for EU membership in 1987 and accession talks began in 2005.
However, negotiations stalled in 2007 due to the objections of the Greek Cypriot administration in the divided island of Cyprus, as well as opposition from Germany and France.
To gain membership, Turkey has to successfully conclude negotiations on 35 policy chapters that involve reforms and the adoption of European standards.
As of May 2016, 16 chapters had been opened and one concluded. However, in December 2016, the member states said no new chapters will be opened.
Since then, the country has held many negotiations with the bloc officials, insisting that Turkey wants to open Chapter 23 on the judiciary and fundamental rights and Chapter 24 on justice, freedom and security.