EU Sees ‘Cause for Concern’ in Turkey

The flags of Turkey and the European Union on display in Istanbul

BRUSSELS (Agence France-Presse)—The European Union executive on Wednesday expressed concern about developments in Turkey where the government is embroiled in a massive graft scandal that has triggered a purge of the police.

Asked to respond to events in Turkey, a spokesman for the European Commission said “recent developments” in the country were “a cause of concern.”

“We urge Turkey, as a candidate country committed to the political criteria of accession, including the application of the rule of law, to take all the necessary measures to ensure that allegations of wrongdoing are addressed without discrimination or preference in a transparent and impartial manner,” said a Commission statement.

“Any action which undermines the effectiveness of investigations into these allegations should be avoided.”

Twenty-four people have been arrested as part of a massive corruption investigation that emerged in Turkey last month, including the sons of former Interior Minister Muammer Güler and former Economy Minister Zafer Çağlayan.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has cast the corruption investigations as an attempted “judicial coup” by forces seeking to undermine his government, and hundreds of police officers have been removed from their posts.

The fighting via probes and dismissals highlights the deepening conflict between the ruling AKP and the Gülen movement, the followers of which are said to hold key positions inside the secret services, the police and the judiciary, and who are believed to be behind the investigation.

“The recent steps (removing, reassigning or firing police officers and investigators) are a matter of concern,” the EU text said. “These steps could undermine the current investigations and capacity of the judiciary and the police to investigate matters in an independent manner.”

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9 Comments

  1. Ari said:

    The EU politicians are extremely naive in thinking that the “application of the rule of law” will ever work in a country with 95% (if not higher) rate of ignorance. Turks only want to go back to their glorious Ottoman Empire era. Western mentality has no place in today’s Turkey unless a fundamental shift occurs from within that society which will separate their religion from civil law. In Islam, this is not a possibility.

    • Gezi-ist said:

      Sorry to say this Ari, but you made up this claim that “Turks only want to go back to the Ottoman Days”. There was a protest movement last summer which unified Secular Nationalists, Liberals, Leftists, Non-AKP Religious Conservatives, Kurds, Alevis, Christians (Including Istanbul Armenians). There were even pictures of people where one guy with an Ataturk poster stood with another guy with a picture of the PKK leader. Have you not read the news lately, or what, concerning the serious of Anti-Government movements going on. Maybe you just want to think over 95% of Turkey supports Neo Ottomanism because hating on all things Turkish is normal for your people.

      By the way, the EU supports the ruling AKP party. So you are wrong. All spectrums of Turkey believe in strong civil society, No European Law, No Taliban/Al-Qaida/Sharia Law, No Coup-Ridden Laws.

      How is your Armenia doing and how do people view Civil Society movements in Armenia. With suspicion and paranoia, just like Erdogan supporters.

      • Ari said:

        Unfortunately the people who poured into the street protests are a minority in Turkey. The majority of Turks live in the countryside.

        How can any Armenian hate Turks when our blood runs in majority of the Turks? DNA testing will prove this to the case and perhaps in a not too-distant future the rich heritage of the Western Armenia will come to be again.

        The situation in Armenia is a different story and not the topic of this article.

  2. Ari said:

    @ Gezi-ist: Unfortunately the people who poured into the street protests are a minority in Turkey. The majority of Turks live in the countryside.

    How can any Armenian hate Turks when our blood runs in majority of the Turks? DNA testing will prove this to the case and perhaps in a not too-distant future the rich heritage of the Western Armenia will come to be again.

    The situation in Armenia is a different story and not the topic of this article.

    • Gezi-Ist said:

      I am not an extremist when it comes to the Armenian issue. We should actually work on full ratification of the Kars treaty, opening up of all borders and on the Turkish end, there should be some degree of concessions (cedeing territory, paying compensation to victims, etc). There are even scholars who have straightforward used the Genocide term to describe events which happened in 1915-1923 (in Turkey) and even they are not looking into concessions. I understand the political situation in Yerevan is a totally different thing, but civil society movements can help to solve all problems in the region. I am not painting a too rosy picture of things or be an optimist, but, these opportunities could be used to solve lingering problems between rival neighbors.

      • Ari said:

        The First Armenian Republic was invaded by illegitimate forces of Ataturk and the Bolsheviks. Armenian ancestral lands belong to the Armenians. The fact that these lands were stolen thru the crime of genocide make the issue very simple and clear. The only way justice and peace can be restored is the return of Western Armenia to Armenia proper along with compensation and official Turkish acknowledgement of its past crimes and coverups.

        • Gezi-ist said:

          That is what I have exactly stated. Ratify either the Kars or Moscow treaty (that is setting up Territorial Concessions) for normalization of ties. Offer economic compensation to Armenian casualties. Acknowledgement of shared suffering on both sides. This is what we should agree on.

  3. Alex Postallian said:

    The e.u. knew for years,turkey was corrupt,genocidial,highy illiteracy rate,inhuman towards their minorities..a country that doesn’t govern,police don’t police.After all that blinking,they realized turkey is a sewer. With their eyesight impaired,faculties impaired, Lets offer them a SEEING EYE DOG..OR CANE…

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