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Conservatives blast Westerwelle over Turkey EU bid
Westerwelle with Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoglu. Photo: DPA

Conservatives blast Westerwelle over Turkey EU bid

Published: 30 Jul 2010 10:25 GMT+02:00
Updated: 30 Jul 2010 10:25 GMT+02:00

Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle has angered conservatives in his own government coalition this week by keeping open the possibility of full European Union membership for Turkey.

The Christian Social Union, the Bavarian sister party of Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats, demanded on Friday that Westerwelle take a stronger and clearer stance that Turkey should remain a “privileged partner” of Europe, rather than a full member.

In the Turkish capital Ankara this week, Westerwelle called for “an open-ended process, which is not an automatic process” towards Turkey’s membership.

“Turkey's direction is Europe ... We place great importance on deepening mutual ties and binding Turkey to Europe,” he said.

Westerwelle effectively kept open the idea of Turkey’s future EU membership and avoided using the term “privileged partner,” which the conservatives prefer.

The debate follows British Prime Minister David Cameron’s remark this week that he was “angry” over the slow pace of Turkey's accession talks, declaring himself the country's “strongest possible advocate for EU membership.”

Alexander Dobrindt, general secretary of the CSU told daily Der Tagesspiegel’s Friday edition that it was “all very well to offer the insight that Turkey is not ready for admission and that they EU is not ready to accept” them.

But one should not “against better wisdom cling onto an open-ended process that cannot produce results in reality.”

This was rather “the time to say to Turkey that further discussions only make sense if they are conducted with the eventual goal of becoming a privileged partner.”

Talk of an open-ended process was just empty diplomatic speech “to which you can’t fasten anything,” Dobrindt said.

It was less damaging, by comparison, to “show fairness to the Turkish partners,” by being upfront, he said.

“The realistic view has to be expressed,” he said.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

13:41 July 30, 2010 by Essertpitay
The European Union should go back to the original 6 : France, Germany, Italy and Benelux. And kick out the rest of the lot !
14:31 July 30, 2010 by harrylatour
That comment is a little harsh @essertpitay,,shurely us Brits are not ''too much of a drain'' (sic) on the finances of the Union.After all,like Germany we are a major contributor to it's stability.
14:43 July 30, 2010 by Essertpitay
Ok...We will keep the Welsh and the Scots, the rest can go and try to revive the old EFTA !
06:05 July 31, 2010 by nabs
please check out http://www.islamicsolutions.com/islam-a-quick-introduction/
08:19 July 31, 2010 by great_warrior
Please stop the disaster by not letting Turkey joining the European Union. If Turkey joins EU then terrorism, extortions ,unemployment, stealings,robberies, burglaries, Hartz 4 and illegal migrations will increase. Even today the Non-Muslims in east Turkey are treated like third class citizens. Please save Europe from becoming Taliban...
08:38 July 31, 2010 by marimay
LOL a lot of islamophobe morons on this website. Gross!

EU is destined to be a huge fail anyway. You can only bail out the lesser countries so many times you know.... have fun paying for them for the rest of your lives!

Turkey does not need the EU.
13:22 July 31, 2010 by register_to_comment
I am really wondering how many of those people commenting on such an issue have been to Turkey. That country is way more different from what you have been hearing from the mass media in Europe and USA. Go, spend a week in Istanbul and get rid of your non-sense stereotypes and prejudices. If Turkey can sustain, its current foreign relations strategy and the steady growth and development for a decade or two you will see who is going to apply for a working permit or social benefits in which country, in Germany and etc. or in Turkey.
13:50 July 31, 2010 by saucymugwump
register_to_comment wrote: That country is way more different from what you have been hearing

I'm sure Hrant Dink, the Armenian journalist killed in Turkey, would have disagreed.

It is difficult to believe Westerwelle could so naive regarding the treatment of gays like himself in Islamic countries.

Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi said: "You will be imams of the European continent . . . We await the day when Turkey joins the European Union to serve as a Trojan horse . . . We must unite in Europe, and to be an Islamic state and one under the banner of the World Islamic People's Leadership."

http://saucymugwump.blogspot.com/
15:13 July 31, 2010 by phoenix18d
Time to move on all countries have been guilty of some atrocity in their past.We should learn from history and try not to repeat those mistakes.
21:29 July 31, 2010 by Logic Guy
Well, I wonder how the German people and especially Angel Merkel, see Westerwelle now.

I believe that humans should respect each other. However, we are not required to agree with each other's views on life. What that being said, I can honestly say that Liberalism is immoral poison. It's the only thing that really threatens the future of human existence.

No nation that can possibly have the quality of life it deserves, if it is being lead by people who don't understand the true meaning of conservatism. If the world as we know it does end someday, then it will be because the universe / God grew tired of dealing with so many screwed-up people.
01:23 August 1, 2010 by wenddiver
It will be like when the wall came down between the two Germanies, except instead of it being old friends and relatives it will be Muslim Turks coming to Germany to take over.
14:38 August 1, 2010 by michael4096
I believe in the eu and I believe turkey, if and when it meets the rules of entry, should become a fully paid up member.

If we want the 21st century to be better than the 20th, we must start living what we believe. Continue the prejudices of the past and we'll repeat the mistakes of the past. The 3m turks in germany illustrate that there exist no fundamental differences between these peoples, just fear and superstition on both sides.
20:40 August 1, 2010 by wenddiver
No fundemental difference between Germans and Turks? You are yanking my chain, correct? If you are correct Germany has changed a lot since I was there.
03:00 August 2, 2010 by Der Grenadier aus Aachen
I reiterate; Westerwelle is an idiot.
18:15 August 2, 2010 by michael4096
@wenddiver - no, no change. Still the usual fighting in the streets, lynchings on the street corners, pogrom every saturday night..
15:42 August 3, 2010 by Bishopbayern
Turkey is not in Europe! So why on earth would it be in the EU? They should go join the arab league or set up their own middle east union.
16:35 August 5, 2010 by recherche
My feeling is that Europeans must close ranks. Globalisation is sort of OK, but there is also no doubt it can destroy the social fabric of the relatively less populous Nations of Europe. And much as I admire the rich history of Turkey, I cannot see the sense in getting closer to a country with such a dominant species of religion. Religion is all about herd-instinct and power, is it not? We Europeans therefore would be wise to keep them at arm's length, and powerfully re-assert our right to be who we are. The toughest challenge is keeping the UK out of continental Europe, and I would [I was born there] be in favour of excluding the UK from the European union.
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