Turkey hopes to turn 'new page' with EU: Erdogan

Turkey hopes to turn 'new page' with EU: Erdogan
2 min read
16 December, 2020
Erdogan called for rescuing Turkish-European relations from "this vicious circle", adding that he hoped to "start again" in talks with the EU "on a basis of mutual interests".
Turkey hopes to turn a "new page" with the EU, Erdogan said on Tuesday [Getty]
Turkey hopes to turn a "new page" with the EU, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday in the highest-level contact with a European official since Brussels decided on sanctions last week.

"While Turkey hopes to turn a new page with the EU, some ceaselessly try to provoke crises," Erdogan told European Council President Charles Michel in a telephone call, according to a statement from the Turkish presidency.

Erdogan called for rescuing Turkish-European relations from "this vicious circle", adding that he hoped to "start again" in talks with the EU "on a basis of mutual interests".

The president said the 2016 deal aimed at curbing migration through Turkey to Europe in return for billions of euros in funds could be a starting point for creating a more "positive" climate.

"We hope that the EU can adopt a constructive attitude and common sense toward Turkey," Erdogan said.

EU leaders meeting in Brussels last Thursday decided to draw up a list of Turkish targets for sanctions over Ankara's "unilateral actions and provocations" in the eastern Mediterranean, believed to be rich in energy resources.

Turkey, an EU candidate country whose accession process has frozen over many issues including its human rights record, was later hit by reprisals from NATO ally the United States over its controversial acquisition of Russian air defence missiles.

But the US sanctions were lighter than feared.

Washington banned all new US export licenses and loan credits to SSB military procurement agency, and barred the agency's executives from visiting or holding assets in the United States.

Yet all existing military programmes remain in place, and neither Turkish banks nor Erdogan and his inner circle are affected.

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