Turkey’s ties with Europe will never be cut: Presidential aide
Turkey’s bonds with Europe will never be broken despite problems, the president’s chief adviser has said, as he met with his colleagues from Germany and France as well as the European Union ahead of the late March EU summit.
“We will never cut [our ties] with Europe. There were ups and downs in our ties in this period. Europe’s perspective on Turkey has narrowed. There is a Europe which receives instructions from Washington,” İbrahim Kalın, the president’s chief foreign adviser, said in a televised interview late March 11.
Europe’s looking at the United States while shaping its own policy is creating negative results in regards to global issues, Kalın added.
Ties between Turkey and the EU were strained in the recent years, particularly in 2020 due to tension in the eastern Mediterranean that pit Turkey and Greece against each other. The EU stood with Greece and accused Turkey of carrying out illegal hydrocarbon activities. The tension de-escalated in late 2020. The EU Council will come together to discuss ties with Turkey at the summit on March 25 and 26.
Diplomatic contacts between Turkey and the European countries have accelerated in the recent period as President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan spoke with both German and French leaders, Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Emmanuel Macron via videoconference.
Kalın, for his part, met his European colleagues in a meeting in Istanbul on March 11. The Turkish delegation headed by Kalın and including Deputy Foreign Minister and Director of EU Affairs Faruk Kaymakçı met with Maryem van den Heuvel, the chief foreign policy adviser to the European Council president, Jan Hecker, the chief foreign policy adviser to the German chancellor, Emmanuel Bonne, the chief foreign policy adviser to the French president, and Nikolaus Meyer-Landrut, the head of the EU Delegation to Turkey, at the Dolmabahçe Office in Istanbul.
Cooperation areas between Turkey and the EU and member states were discussed during the meeting.
Bilateral Turkey-EU relations were also assessed comprehensively, while regional issues were among the topics of discussion.
Preparations were made to set the agenda of a meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and EU leaders ahead of the EU summit slated for March 25-26.