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“Roadmap for Turkey - European Union Relations” The report, prepared with the initiative of the President of GRF, Ambassador Selim Yenel, with the contribution of Global Relations Forum (GRF) members who have worked in diplomacy, bureaucracy, academia and business for years, has been published.
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27/06/2021 - Viewed 1192 times



Turkey-EU relations which despite its ebbs and flows have generally been able to maintain its upward direction for more than half a century, have recently reached a serious impasse and decline. In line with its goals of Westernization and integration with the West, Turkey has pursued EU membership as the key element of its national policy. However, the membership goal is getting farther away. The main reason for this is the opportunities missed, as well as the mistakes the two sides made over the years and the consequent mistrust. We believe it is high time to look beyond the past and into the future of the relationship in a new manner.

Furthermore, not only the policies of the EU and Turkey, but also their perspectives towards each other should change. The priorities of the two sides are still different. However, it is still possible to combine these priorities to common objectives. The issues to overcome are well known.

A new perspective based on objective criteria and a serious political will are needed for any positive development to occur in Turkey - EU relations. Otherwise, it will be difficult to overcome the lack of trust. There is an obligation for both sides here.

Creative and pragmatic approaches to be fashioned within the framework of the Customs Union will also have a positive impact on membership negotiations, visa exemption and other areas.

Turkey needs to return to predictable policies, re-evaluate its relations with other countries and allies, especially with its neighbors, and continue the détente it initiated in foreign policy. Priority is not only for justice and human rights, but also to turn to rational policies in the economic field, and implement new structural reforms in all matters in addition to earlier steps.

The EU's attitude towards Turkey needs to change. The EU should also be expected to turn towards more convincing policies based on normative values such as pacta sunt servanta, as well as objective evaluations and approaches. In this context, if the EU is to set an example, it should not neglect its own homework. The 31 fact that the EU constantly puts new political preconditions in front of Turkey in matters such as the Customs Union and changes these conditions arbitrarily reinforces the lack of trust.

Both sides will lose in the long run if they fail to work and act together. One should carefully consider who gains from prolonging this estrangement between the parties. Rather than those that dissociate us, the focus should be on issues that can unite. The future of Europe belongs to both sides.

The Report titled “Roadmap for Turkey - European Union Relations” has been prepared with the initiative of the President of GRF, Ambassador Selim Yenel. The authors of the report are GRF members who dedicate their career to Turkey-EU relations in diplomacy, bureaucracy, and academia and business world. They are (in alphabetical order): Nilgün Arısan Eralp Director of the Center for EU Studies, TEPAV, Prof. Dr. Senem Aydin Düzgit, Prof. Dr. Atila Eralp, Ambassador (R) Haluk Ilıcak, Dr. Bahadır Kaleağası, Ambassador (R) Selim Kuneralp, Doç. Dr. Çiğdem Nas, Ambassador (R) Özdem Sanberk, Ambassador (R) Selim Yenel.


You may read report from here.



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