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Eastern Mediterranean

The EU Commission Released A New Report on Candidate Countries

The EU Commission shared a new report that covers the candidate countries for the EU. The report underlined the following points concerning Turkey:

– Turkey is an essential partner in the region. Ankara is crucial regarding migration, counterterrorism, economy, trade, energy, and transportation. Thus, the continuation of relations with Turkey based on collaboration and mutual interest will be strategically beneficial for the EU. 

– The EU expects Turkey to make reforms concerning the rule of law and human rights.

– The Turkish policies regarding refugees were praised, and it was underlined that Turkey is doing a good job in hosting more than 4 million Syrian refugees.

– Counterterrorism was also mentioned in the report. The report emphasizes that counterterrorism is Turkey’s legitimate right and responsibility and asks for proportional action by reminding that PKK is on the EU’s terror list.

– Additionally, the report endorses the theses presented by Greece concerning the Eastern Mediterranean.

Turkey Criticized the Report Released by the European Commission

Turkish foreign ministry has released a statement in which the EU commission’s latest report is criticized. The ministry asserts that the report was biased, far from being constructive, and had double-standards. The statement also highlighted that the “report continues to criticize Turkey by means of unfounded arguments, while still not referring to its own unfulfilled responsibilities and commitments. Prejudiced, unjust, and disproportionate criticisms about our system of government, elections, fundamental rights, certain court rulings, administrative decisions, and legitimate measures taken while combatting terrorism, as well as our foreign, security, and economic policies, reveal how far the report is from being objective.”

Furthermore, the statement underlines that the report endorses the Greek and Greek Cypriot theses on the disputes in the Eastern Mediterranean, and this situation tarnishes the impartiality of the commission.