Turkey’s European Union membership accession talks will continue, said EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini on Monday, underlining Ankara’s role as a partner in the region.
“We are continuing to talk with Turkey,” Mogherini said in the northwestern Slovenian town of Bled, where she came for the 2017 Bled Strategic Forum.
She underlined that Turkey remains a partner in the region in many different areas and is still a candidate country.
“So, we will continue talks, it will be up to the internal discussions we will have and most of all to the discussions we will have together with them to define the future of our relations,” said the EU’s top diplomat.
Speaking to reporters, Mogherini highlighted that important EU contacts from Ankara, including Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, were also attending the forum. She also described the latest Turkey-EU High-Level Political Dialogue in late July in Brussels as “good talks”.
“We are not always agreeing on everything. There are some issues … that are taking our positions very much apart, but talks continue,” she added.
The statements followed German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her center-left rival Martin Schulz clashing over Turkey policy in a televised debate Sunday night, with Schulz making a surprise proposal to halt Ankara’s EU membership talks and freeze its pre-accession funds.
Anti-Turkey rhetoric has gained ground in Germany as the country is going to the polls on September 24 to decide the fate of Merkel’s government.—Agencies