Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Defending Europe’s frontiers: Minister warns against EU-Turkey estrangement

Defending Europe’s frontiers
“One sentence extremists would like to hear is probably that Turkey’s relationship with the EU is broken,” a senior Turkish minister said on Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters in London, Turkey’s EU minister Omer Celik said all statements on freezing or suspending Turkey’s EU negotiations would give a boost to extremists in Europe.

Speaking about German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel’s recent remarks on freezing arms sales to Turkey, Celik said Ankara used weapons in the fight against Daesh and the PKK; and Gabriel’s remarks indirectly mean weakening Turkey’s fight against terrorism.

Gabriel on Monday said his government put most arms exports to Turkey "on hold” due to recent tensions between Berlin and Ankara.

Celik said: “What does Turkey use those weapons for? For the fight against terrorism, the fight against Daesh and the PKK.

“So, what those sentences indirectly mean is weakening Turkey’s fight against terrorism. This does not harm Turkey. Turkey, as an experienced state in this geography, will provide security in all conditions, but organizations such as Daesh and the PKK are now walking freely in Europe’s capitals.”

The minister also said as Turkey protected its own borders it also defended Europe’s frontiers.

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