Millennium Post

Prez Erdogan vows to say 'goodbye' if EU does not open accession chapters

Prez Erdogan vows to say goodbye if EU does not open   accession chapters
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said Turkey will walk away from its long-running European Union membership process if Brussels does not open new accession chapters.

"There is no option other than opening chapters that you have not opened until now. If you open them, great. If you don't, goodbye," Erdoğan said in a May 2 speech.

"Turkey is not their [the EU's] doorman," he added.

Erdoğan was speaking after officially rejoining the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) as a member, in the first major change to come into effect following the controversial April 16 referendum on boosting his powers.

He recalled EU demands for Turkey to put an end to its state of emergency, vowing that Ankara "will not ask for permission" to declare
a state of emergency.

He also referred to the ongoing state of emergency in France, calling on Brussels to "first lift the state of emergency in France."

"You will first open chapters, fulfill your promises and then we will sit at the table and discuss. If not, we have nothing left to talk about with you," Erdoğan said. Also speaking on May 2, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said Ankara and Brussels could hold a summit following discussions that Erdoğan will hold with EU officials on the sidelines of a NATO meeting in Brussels on May 24-25.

Relations between Turkey and the EU have tumbled to unprecedented lows since the failed July 2016 coup attempt. The EU says it is troubled by the state of human rights in Turkey, while Turkey has slammed what it sees as a lack of solidarity from the bloc after the coup attempt.

Sixteen chapters have been opened out of a total of 35 since accession talks began in October 2005, although Turkey's bid to be a part of the bloc dates back to the 1960s.


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