Europe votes to suspend Turkey-EU accession negotiations

Paris, Nov 24 (IANS) The European Parliament on Thursday voted to temporarily suspend further negotiations with Turkey over its accession to the European Union.

Some 479 MEPs voted in favour of a resolution to freeze EU accession talks with Turkey, while 37 voted against and 107 abstained, Efe news agency reported.

A statement from the plenary session in Strasbourg, France, said MEPs pledged to “review their position when the ‘disproportionate repressive measures’ under the state of emergency in Turkey are lifted”.

MEPs added that Ankara had shown a lack of coordination, lamenting that the process had become one-sided.

Turkey has faced criticism from the West over perceived oppressive measures taken against its institutions and people during the wake of the attempted coup d’état on July 15.

Criticising the EU as being divided and “surrounded by the extreme right”, Turkish minister for the EU Ömer Celik added that the decision “lacked vision”.

High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs Federica Mogherini reiterated that both Turkey and the EU would lose out if negotiations came to an end.

Turkey’s candidacy for the EU was accepted in 1999 and formal negotiations between Brussels and Ankara began in 2005.

–IANS

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