European Parliament discusses report on Turkey

European Parliament discussed a report on Turkey, prepared by rapporteur Ria Oomen-Ruijten.

European Parliament discusses report on Turkey

European Union (EU) Commissioner in charge of enlargement Olli Rehn said Wednesday the reform process in Turkey slowed down in 2008. "However, we are receiving positive signals from Turkey since the beginning of 2009".

Speaking at the general assembly of the European Parliament during a debate on a report on Turkey, prepared by rapporteur Ria Oomen-Ruijten, Rehn said that the establishment of a Kurdish tv channel, formation of a parliamentary committee on women and men equality and the appointment of Egemen Bagis as the new chief negotiator are all positive steps taken in Turkey.

Rehn stressed that they closely monitor developments regarding freedom of the press and the freedom of expression in Turkey.

A crucial opportunity exists in 2009 to re-unify the island of Cyprus and Turkey's strong contribution to the process in Cyprus is important, Rehn said.

Ria Oomen-Ruijten said that the report prepared on Turkey actually makes a call on Turkey to "speed-up the reform process".

Among the prior issues to be dealt with in Turkey are the establishment of a state based on the rule of law, the establishment of an independent judiciary and the development of basic rights and freedoms, Oomen-Ruijten said.

In the report on Turkey, we have criticized the slow pace of reforms in Turkey but also mentioned important developments, Oomen-Ruijten said.

"It would have been an imagination to establish a Kurdish tv channel in Turkey ten
years ago," Oomen-Ruijten said.

"Turkey's development of its relations with Armenia is an important matter. Turkey should open its border with Armenia and end 'the isolation' of Armenia," Oomen-Ruijten said.

"We expect more steps in Turkey in the areas of freedom of expression and the freedom of press," Oomen-Ruijten also said.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 12 Mart 2009, 12:29