“Turkey Is a Country that has been Kept Waiting at the EU's Door for 54 Years”

05.01.2018
“Turkey Is a Country that has been Kept Waiting at the EU's Door for 54 Years”

Holding a joint press conference with President Macron of France, President Erdoğan, pointing to the difficulties raised in Turkey’s admission process into the EU, said: “It is exhausting us and our people. Maybe, it will even drag us toward a decision. We cannot continuously ask ‘please take us, too’.”


President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan held a joint press conference with President Emmanuel Macron of France following their meeting at the Élysée Palace.

“We enjoy a 500-year-old friendship, which is now strengthened by the steps we have taken and deals that we have made,” President Erdoğan said.

“THE EU CANNOT TELL US THE REASON”

“Turkey has been kept waiting at the EU's door for 54 years. And there is no other example like it within the EU,” President Erdoğan said, and added: “When it comes to telling us why, the EU cannot even tell us the reason. And, at first they were hindering us via 15 chapters; later the number of the chapters regarding us was increased to 35. And again, a different approach was adopted and when it came to closing chapters, it did not happen.”

“It is exhausting us and our people. Maybe, it will even drag us toward a decision. We cannot continuously ask ‘please take us, too’,” the President noted.

“WE AIM TO REACH €20 BILLION TRADE VOLUME BETWEEN TURKEY AND FRANCE”

“We aim to reach a bilateral trade volume of €20 billion. If our two countries join forces, we can do it,” President Erdoğan said.

Regarding the fight against terror, President Erdoğan said: “Turkey has paid very significant prices in this fight in the last 35-40 years. I am also aware of the prices France has paid.” “Turkey houses nearly 3.5 million Syrian refugees, and has spent $30 billion so far. The EU has not delivered the aid it promised for the refugees but we will continue to provide the biggest support to the refugees anyway. We see it as a humanitarian and conscientious issue.”

“PYD-YPG ARE BRANCHES OF PKK”

Drawing attention to Turkey’s fight against DAESH both in Syria and at home, President Erdoğan said: “Now, I call on our friends; PYD and YPG are branches of PKK. We must fight together against them. Unfortunately, some of our friends still think that they are fighting against DAESH by taking YPG, PYD on their side. However, new plans are being made against DAESH and different living grounds are being prepared for them. I think we should all be vigilant here and further improve our intelligence agencies’ cooperation and information flow. We have nearly 700 thousand kinsmen in France, who are largely integrated to the French society. And it makes us very happy that they serve as a bridge.”

“WE WILL BE IN CLOSE CONSULTATION WITH FRANCE ON AL-QUDS AND PALESTINE”

“We have also discussed Syria, Iraq, Palestine, the Israeli-Palestinian relations and the two-state solution,” President Erdoğan said. Underscoring that being powerful does not make you right, President Erdoğan said: “Power comes from right. If you are right, you are powerful. If you are not right, you are not powerful. You are destined to lose it all sooner or later. We have seen its examples.”

Noting that similar troubles are being experienced in Libya and Egypt, President Erdoğan said: “A hand keeps stirring up trouble in those places.”

“We will be in close consultation with France on Al-Quds and Palestine. Our dialogue with France on Syria will be continued in a determined way.”

“TURKEY FIGHTS AGAINST FETO, PKK, DAESH”

Regarding FETO and PKK, President Erdoğan said: “Sensitivity against members of these terrorist organizations is of great importance. They are institutionalizing here with their associations, foundations and businesses. If the sensitivity here is disregarded, I believe it will cause very different troubles tomorrow, because we paid a heavy price. As you know, 251 citizens died martyrs on the 15th of July. Unfortunately, the FETO terrorist organization made us pay that price. 2193 citizens were wounded. We do not want our friends to pay the same price. At the moment, we fight against FETO, PKK DAESH.”

“The West always tells us that ‘judiciary is independent’. Turkey is a state of law. Judiciary is also independent in Turkey,” he said.

PRESIDENT MACRON OF FRANCE: “EXEMPLARY COOPERATION BETWEEN TURKEY AND FRANCE IN THE FIGHT AGAINST TERROR”

Stating that he and President Erdoğan regularly talk since last May and noting his approach based on dialogue and joint work, President Macron said that there is an exemplary cooperation between Turkey and France in the fight against terror.

Noting that France works to bring down the PKK terrorist organization’s financial network and fights against DAESH and all terrorist groups affiliated to it in the area of Iraq and Syria, President Macron said: “We will continue to fight together against terror.”

President Macron also voiced his desire for the continuation of a calmer dialogue concerning Turkey’s EU membership.

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