Turkey’s perspective on EU membership has not changed

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Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan said Thursday that Turkey’s perspective toward European Union membership has not changed.

This came during his participation in a symposium at a conference of European foreign ministers on “Reform and Expansion of the European Union” held in Berlin.

During the symposium, Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Billstrom said: “We are talking about expansion, but here I want to hear the point of view of my counterpart Hakan Fidan.”

Fidan replied: “I can say that we have not changed our view on European Union membership, and it is important today for Union members to start a new discussion on enlargement in a new spirit in light of the new geopolitical circumstances.”

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The Turkish Foreign Minister pointed out that more than 50 years have passed since his country applied for membership in the European Union.

He continued: “The years 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008 were the most intense period for Turkey on its path to membership in the European Union. Chapters were opening and closing one after another until we reached one day, until Turkey’s membership in the European Union was frozen for geopolitical reasons.”

He pointed out that after almost 15 years, the discussion has begun again that expansion is necessary for geopolitical reasons, adding: “We believe that we can contribute to this discussion in a very constructive way, and I hope that this discussion will produce a result that benefits everyone.”