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Turkey's policies not harming EU bid: report

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(ANKARA) - The European Union's enlargement chief has said that Turkey's growing involvement in Middle East affairs does not contradict its bid to join the bloc, in remarks published Monday.

"The country's importance in the region is increasing desire to work with Turkey... I do not believe that Turkey's steps and its attitude towards the EU are contradictory to its membership process," Stefan Fule told the Sabah daily.

His comments came in response to a question on whether Turkey's vote against fresh sanctions against Iran, adopted at the UN Security Council last week, signalled that Ankara was sliding away from the West.

Turkey defended its "no" vote as a move aimed at keeping the door open for a negotiated settlement on Iran's nuclear programme under a nuclear fuel swap deal it brokered with Tehran on May 17, together with Brazil.

Fule however insisted the accord was "insufficient to solve the problem" mainly because "it does not contain a pledge by Tehran to resume talks on its nuclear programme," according to Sabah.

Turkey's "no" vote came atop a crisis with Israel over the May 31 raid on Gaza-bound aid ships, which claimed the lives of nine Turks and prompted fiery anti-Israeli tirades by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, accompanied with advocacy of the radical Palestinian group Hamas.

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates said last week the EU's failure to offer Turkey a swift accession process was one of the factors behind the perceived shift in Ankara's foreign policy.

Erdogan, whose ruling party is the moderate offshoot of a banned Islamist movement, dismissed the charges, insisting that Turkey was committed to its links in both East and West.

Ankara however has often expressed bitterness over the slow pace of its EU membership talks, struggling amid French and German opposition to the mainly Muslim country's accession and the sluggish pace of reform in Ankara.


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Turkey has chosen Islam not EU

Posted by Niels Jorgensen at 19 June 2010, 11:06 CET
Turkey has rightfully chosen Islam, as also the majority of turks does.

Let Turkey follow its muslims brothers a,d let us in EU live based upon several hundrerd years of Christianity.

The turks already living in EU, are amonst the least integrated immigrants.

How can anybody believe that Turkey with its Islamic roots can be integrated. Just look at the role of Turkey in OIC (The Islamic Organisation).

Give Turkey partnership but NOT membership.

With Turkey in EU the islamification will be further strenghtened as Turkey will cry "Christian Club" when something does NOT follow Islam.

Look at your local turk. They are mostly nice people; but their culture are so far away from the European Christian / Judish culture. And it shows.