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Turkish Foreign Ministry says EP report on Turkey devoid of meaning

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The Turkish Foreign Ministry has said a report approved by the European Parliament on Wednesday asking for the suspension of EU accession talks with Turkey has no value or meaning.

In a written statement on Wednesday the ministry said: “We do not attribute any value to this unilateral and by no means objective stance of the European Parliament when we are in a period of increasing our common efforts to put Turkey-EU relations back on track and restarting the reform process while we leave behind the trauma of the heinous coup attempt of 15 July [2016]. Hence, the Resolution is deemed meaningless on our end.”

Forging a common European Parliament position on Turkey’s long-stalled EU bid, lawmakers voted 370 in favor and 109 against, with 143 abstentions, for an official freeze of the membership process, which would jeopardize some EU funding.

EU governments have the final say in any suspension.

The ministry also said the large number of votes against and abstentions indicates that the resolution has no solid ground within the European Parliament of 751 members.

“The adoption of this biased and unfair report during the European Parliament election period and just before the local elections in Turkey in particular, as well as the meeting of the Turkey-EU Association Council to be held nearly after four years, contradicts the respect for elections to which we adhere in Europe,” added the ministry.

Turkey will hold local elections on March 31.

Turkey says EU membership remains one of its top strategic goals even though the accession talks, formally launched in 2004, have been stalled for years. Some EU leaders and officials have called for them to be ended.

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