The European Parliament today adopted its annual progress report on Turkey's EU accession process. Commenting on the report, Green foreign policy spokesperson and Turkey expert Bodil Valero said:
"The European Parliament has today highlighted its concerns with the backsliding on democratic norms, like the freedom of expression and the media, under the Erdogan regime. After years of neglecting relations with Turkey, it is disturbing that EU governments are now bending over backwards to please President Erdogan, whilst wilfully ignoring his transformation of the Turkish state into an autocracy with increasing disregard for basic rights.
"While our group has always strongly supported the accession path of Turkey, this cannot mean turning a blind eye to rights abuses in the country. The EU Commission and governments should speak out about the trampling of fundamental rights by the Erdogan regime, regardless of what other interests they want to pursue with Turkey's cooperation.
"An overriding goal for the EU must be to ensure peace in Turkey. The EU must pressure the government to immediately restart the peace process with the Kurdish PKK. We regret that a majority of MEPs failed to call for an end to the solitary confinement of Abdullah Öcalan."<xml> Normal 0 false false false EN-GB X-NONE X-NONE </xml>