Turkey

The article below published yesterday by TRT English is promising.

At last Sweden, Britain, Spain, Italy and Finland (members of “Friends of Turkey”) have decided to act concretely.

If you act as you think, the missing link, synchronicity (Sting – ‘Synchronicity I’ / “Synchronicity”).

In my opinion the most important article of the plan that they prepeared is the following one:

One of the articles envisages that all kinds of efforts be exerted for the Cyprus issue to be resolved in the next six months before the Greek Cypriot Sector becomes the term-president of the EU. Anything to the contrary, the article says, will cause the members to put the blame for insolubility on the Greek Cypriot administration.

That article satisfies me because not much EU politicians have pointed out so far that it is the Greek Cypriot side that doesn’t want of a solution at Cyprus.

That article will reduce to ashes the injustice done against the Turkish Cypriots and Turkey.

But if no solution is found about Cyprus, will the “Friends of Turkey” really implement that article?

Will they be able to control the EU-Turkey relations?

Will they really be able to reorientate the EU-Turkey negotiations towards a secure direction?

I’m very curious about that matter.

Today everybody knows that the EU does need competent pilots (for instance Wolfgang Münchau and Martin Vander Weyer wrote that the EU needs true leaders).

Here is thus the article of TRT English:

Pro-Turkey EU members in action

The no-progress state on the Ankara-Brussels line has prompted pro-Turkey countries in the EU into action.

Sweden, Britain, Spain, Italy and Finland have drawn up a 3-article plan to speed up the negotiations.

The last chapter opened in the Turkey-EU membership negotiations in which 18 of the total 34 political areas have been vetoed by France and the Greek Cypriot Sector of Cyprus was on June 30, 2010.

Besides the problem of negotiations not making any headway, the assumption by the Greek Cypriot Administration of the EU term presidency in the second half of 2012 strain the Ankara-Brussels relations further more.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s statement that Turkey considers the Greek Cypriots assuming the term-presidency of the EU null and void and he cannot sit at the negotiations table with a country it does not recognize have spurred Sweden, Britain, Spain, Italy and Finland into action.

According to the Greek Cypriot newspaper Fililefteros, those five countries, acting upon an appeal by Swedish Foreign Minister Bildt and British Foreign Secretary Hague, had a meeting two days after the Turkey Progress Report was made public.

According to EurActiv Turkey, that meeting was organised two days before the report was made public.

The meeting in Brussels chaired by the Swedish Foreign Minister and also by EU Commissioner Stefan Füle who supports Turkey’s EU accession centered on a three-article plan to revive relations with Turkey.

According to the first article , those pro-Turkey five countries will do their best by exercising their influence within the EU for a chapter to be opened in the negotiations, thus taking the first favorable step in this regard.

One of the articles envisages that all kinds of efforts be exerted for the Cyprus issue to be resolved in the next six months before the Greek Cypriot Sector becomes the term-president of the EU. Anything to the contrary, the article says, will cause the members to put the blame for insolubility on the Greek Cypriot administration.

The third article is the expectation that French President, who has made it clear he will veto every chapter leading to full EU membership, will not be elected in the forthcoming presidential elections in France.

This expectation will give Turkey the message that the veto on the five crucial chapters will be lifted.

Yours sincerely,

Cem

PS. According to EurActiv Turkey, Alf Svensson, a member of the EU Parliament and also of “Friends of Turkey”, strongly expressed his support for Turkey’s EU membership yesterday.

He said I’m afraid because one day Turkey may withdraw from its EU membership and The EU is an old and ill man. It needs the young Turkey to stand up.

(I personally see the EU as a woman).

Mr Svensson said that Turkey can play an important role at the EU Parliament (as a Turkish citizen I am very eager to see Turkey’s contribution there).

He also said that regarding Turkey’s EU path the EU thought so far that the key was in its hand. But he emphasised that one ought to not forget there is the possibility that Turkey may close the door.

He stated that Turkey’s EU memberhsip is a must, not solely for the EU or Turkey but also for the whole region.

Well Mr Svensson succeeds in scanning an EU with Turkey within it and its vital importance for our wounded and fragile planet.

PPS. Another Swede, Carl Bildt, the minister for Foreign Affairs of Sweden, stated yesterday in Turkey during a press conference with his Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoğlu: Turkey is a European country and With Turkey the EU will be stronger.

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  1. Cem,
    I wouldn’t put too much weight on William Hague and the UK’s support when it probably couldn’t get the support of the people in a referendum about Europe. I suspect that that would also be the case in Germany and France.

    Perhaps it is time for Turkey to make a niche for itself in the Middle East and forget the EU other than trade. Turkey would also have to look at its Human Rights record before it could push for EU membership.

    Do not concern yourself too much with whether we will be able to look after ourselves in old age. If required we will be able to find many new citizens from around the world with the right skills.

    Regards
    George Mc

  2. Good evening George,

    to start with I didn’t approve your previous comment about the article “Greek Cypriots’ oil and gas exploration: a new provocation that jeopardises the ongoing negotiations and the reunification of Cyprus” because it was a paradoxical comment since in your first comment there you wrote:

    In view of the current economic problems does Turkey really want to join the EU and will there be an EU to join in a years time? Answers on a post card please.

    Your comment of today is also paradoxical compared with your words above-mentioned since you express your objection to Turkey’s EU membership.

    I hesitated whether or not to approve your comment also because its last sentence about the new citizens with the right skills creates confusion and leads me to deduce that it conveys racism. I hope I’m wrong.

    I quote you George:

    Cem,
    I wouldn’t put too much weight on William Hague and the UK’s support when it probably couldn’t get the support of the people in a referendum about Europe. I suspect that that would also be the case in Germany and France.

    Let’s recall that the EEC was created in 1957.… after World War II.

    If – after World War II – France or the Netherlands had organised a referendum and that the question was: “Do you want to unite with Germany and create the EEC?”, would their citizens have voted “Yes”? Let’s be clear, if referenda were organised the EEC/EU would have never existed.

    I quote myself from the following article:

    http://turkey.blogactiv.eu/2010/10/25/a-message-to-the-eu-you-do-not-deserve-turkey-but-the-world-does-need-an-eu-member-turkey/

    We must not fool anyone, Turkey is not responsible for the problems of the EU. We ask here and there a referendum about its EU membership. If a referendum was held today, we’d know in advance the results, due to the prejudices implanted in the mentality of the EU citizens. We can’t expect a positive result as long as the EU media and numerous politicians make everything so that the EU citizens are against that membership. On the one hand, the media make a propaganda against Turkey, on the other hand, a referendum is demanded. That is unhealthy.
    Besides, if we had organized a referendum – after World War II – in France to know if the French wanted to unite with the Germans in order to create the EEC/EU, would the French citizens have voted “Yes”? Would the EEC/EU have existed? After World War II, if we had organized a referendum in the Netherlands and that the question was: “Do you agree to unite with Germany to create the EEC?”, well most of the citizens would have voted “No”. Thus, we should stop repeating that most of the EU citizens are against Turkey’s EU membership, because if the opinion of the French or Dutch citizens was asked through a referendum, the EEC/EU would have never existed.

    Dear George I invite you to read the introduction (“First of all…. ” to “…. claims to be civilized and modern.”) of that former article.

    Lastly, I also want to quote the first paragraph in which I introduce the legitimacy of Turkey’s EU membership:

    In 1949, Turkey became a founding member of the Council of Europe. In 1952, it became a key member of NATO. In 1963, the EEC and Turkey signed the Ankara Agreement that foresees the membership of Turkey to the EEC/EU. In 1995, the EU and Turkey signed the Customs Union (Mr Alain Juppé worked on that dossier) that came into force in 1996. Important step before the membership. In 1999 at Helsinki, the whole EU signed and officially recognized Turkey a candidate to the union, and it emphasized that Turkey would be treated as every previous country, and that the objective is the full membership to the EU. In 2004, all the states of the EU signed so that the negotiations start in 2005. And without the key roles of Jacques Chirac and Gerard Schröder, who signed in the name of France and Germany, the opening of the negotiations wouldn’t have been approved. Also in 2004, the EU parliament, direct representative of the EU citizens, supported by an overwhelming margin the opening of the EU-Turkey negotiations (407 votes in favour, 262 against). The European democracy has then pronounced itself at another level. If the EU signed in 1963, 1999 and 2004, it’s because it considers Turkey as a european country. The decisions were already made, we can’t call into question democracy. The EU is a democracy, isn’t it?

    I quote you George:

    Perhaps it is time for Turkey to make a niche for itself in the Middle East and forget the EU other than trade.

    Turkey’s future is the EU, the EU’s future is Turkey. And the world’s future is an EU with Turkey inside.

    Chris Patten, Gerard Schröder, Roger Bootle, Günther Verheugen, Olli Rehn, Alexander Stubb, David Lidington, …. believe that too:

    http://turkey.blogactiv.eu/2011/04/11/anatolia-inside/

    George, Turkey’s path has always been Europe, but why Turkey would not entertain good relations with its neighbours of the Middle East or the Balkans at the same time?

    Improving them is not in contradiction with its EU memberhsip. Let’s remember the policies of the UK with the countries of the Commonwealth.

    I quote you:

    Turkey would also have to look at its Human Rights record before it could push for EU membership.

    Turkey is writing a brand new constitution. The Turkish leaders are aware that Turkey needs a new consitution and they often underlined that it is not possible to keep the current one (which was partially changed, a good beginning). And the military doesn’t intervene in politics anymore. That’s historic George. Historic. The Human rights and the role of the military in politics: two main problems in Turkey that are being resolved.

    By the way, the Turkish military doesn’t intervene in politics anymore. The queens and kings in the EU ought to do the same.

    The other problem is the terrorist group the PKK. The EU has to help Turkey to destroy it. But what has the EU done so far? (Well according to an article of EurActiv Turkey (that dealt with the analysis of a Turkish expert), the PKK will be destroyed next year).

    I quote you:

    Do not concern yourself too much with whether we will be able to look after ourselves in old age. If required we will be able to find many new citizens from around the world with the right skills.

    I am not the only one who says that. Several politicians warned that the EU is ageing.

    The EU needs a labour force of at least 50 million people. So what do you suggest? South America will not be enough to meet the EU’s needs! But maybe that you would want to add also Australia and New Zealand instead of Turkey!

    Well do you mean that the Turks are not skilled or educated? That sentence may be synonymous with racism. I hope I’m wrong.

    There certainly must be unskilled Turkish-rooted citizens in the UK. But how many are they? Did you count them?! But is there not unskilled people among the native citizens of the UK too?

    George, there are some immigrants who don’t integrate but that failure can’t take hostage all the immigrants. Anyway, some of those who are not skilled have no choice but the “dirty jobs”, haven’t they?

    I’m sure that many Turks integrate very well. An example: my little cousin told me that Crytek is a famous company created by 3 Turkish brothers. Crytek is a multicultural team (based in Germany and the UK for instance), and its CEO is Cevat Yerli, who is behind the video games Crysis 1 and 2. I saw the videos of these games on internet, and it is so crystal clear that they seem to be movies. I was very impressed. The fact that a Turk is behind two incredible games that are said to be the best ever of the gaming industry can only make me glad. Well done Cevat.

    Well I’m sure that there are many other positive stories in the UK.

    Lastly, as I am very lucky, below a very short article published today by AA. 200 Turkish scientists work in CERN:

    http://www.aa.com.tr/en/component/content/article/111/98734-turkish-science-minister-to-visit-cern

    Yours sincerely,

    Cem

  3. Cem, Good evening to you my friend. Thank you for your reply.

    I think that I should clarify my position regarding the EU in order that we don’t miss the point. It is too easy to go round in circles
    You are clearly a believer in the EU and passionate about Turkey joining as a full member and I fully respect your view on this. I on the other hand am less convinced that it is a good idea for the United Kingdom to be a full member of the EU. More of that later.
    You say “Let’s recall that the EEC was created in 1957.… after World War II.
    If – after World War II – France or the Netherlands had organised a referendum and that the question was: “Do you want to unite with Germany and create the EEC?”, would their citizens have voted “Yes”? Let’s be clear, if referenda were organised the EEC/EU would have never existed.
    With respect my friend you argument on this one is full of holes. Six countries started the European Coal and Steel community which later became the EEC (a trading club) which The UK joined in 1973 after it was approved in a referendum. Cem it is what has happened since then that is a problem for a lot of UK citizens. We have now become the European Union after god knows how many treaties that have eroded the Sovereignty of the UK people and Parliament. At no time have any of our political leaders asked us if it is okay with the people. The mother of parliaments has somehow been sidelined on this one. No politician has had the courage to put in place a period (let us say 6 months) where there could be a National discussion supported by politicians and academics who could using the press and our national Broadcaster (BBC) to put the case for and against.
    You say “The European democracy has then pronounced itself at another level. If the EU signed in 1963, 1999 and 2004, it’s because it considers Turkey as a European country. The decisions were already made, we can’t call into question democracy. The EU is a democracy, isn’t it?
    Cem, I am not so sure that the EU is a democracy using my understanding of the word. I will admit my friend that I am not an export on continental Europe but I do know that it would be a remarkable citizen in the UK who would have a clue who his/her MEP is (1-10/20 if we were lucky). What I am saying about Brussels and the UK MEP’s is that we very rarely send anyone with any ability to Brussels. It is a place to get rid of people who are a nuisance or rewarded for toeing the party line and being put out to grass. If it were not for the enormous salary and expenses that they receive they would all prefer to be in the Westminster parliament if they were good enough. I think they have all tried and failed! Cem, how can anyone in all honesty justify the appointment and position of Catherine Ashton. This is not about personalities it is about the EU appointing someone to a supposed important job, who has never stood in an election before the people in her life.
    This is not a view that I have arrived at without pain as I have subjected myself to hours of the European Parliament via the BBC and EuroparlTV. What this means Cem is that I must support the UK parliament as the alternative is too awful to contemplate. MEP’s and unelected Commissioners are very good at referring to “their citizens” and what is best for them. Just don’t let them express an opinion which could be considered inconvenient or ‘of message’.
    You say that the EU problems are not the responsibility of Turkey. I agree.
    The politicians who have been hell bent on a European State have managed that all by themselves over the last 40 years.

    I hesitated whether or not to approve your comment also because its last sentence about the new citizens with the right skills creates confusion and leads me to deduce that it conveys racism. I hope I’m wrong.
    Do not concern yourself too much with whether we will be able to look after ourselves in old age. If required we will be able to find many new citizens from around the world with the right skills.
    I am not the only one who says that. Several politicians warned that the EU is ageing.
    The EU needs a labour force of at least 50 million people. So what do you suggest? South America will not be enough to meet the EU’s needs! But maybe that you would want to add also Australia and New Zealand instead of Turkey!
    Well do you mean that the Turks are not skilled or educated? That sentence may be synonymous with racism. I hope I’m wrong.
    There certainly must be unskilled Turkish-rooted citizens in the UK. But how many are they? Did you count them?! But is there not unskilled people among the native citizens of the UK too?
    George, there are some immigrants who don’t integrate but that failure can’t take hostage all the immigrants. Anyway, some of those who are not skilled have no choice but the “dirty jobs”, haven’t they?

    Finally on this part of your post Cem, I am unable to prove that I am not racist however over the years I have found that in the UK if someone disagrees with you on immigration they tend to call you a racist. Although not always, this tends to reflect someone who has lost the argument and throws it in as a departing comment, people should not be ignored or sidelined or disrespected just because their views may be different.
    One of the problems we have coming from different countries is we tend to have different culture and in some cases, values. It is therefore difficult for me (without boring you rigid) to explain my remarks about picking and choosing who has the right to enter the UK.
    Obviously under the current arrangements virtually anyone from the EU can come here. However please I beg of you, remember how small the UK is.
    UK 243,610 sq kil
    Population 62,262,000
    Density 255.6 per sq kil

    France 674,843 sq kil
    Population 65,821,885
    Density 116.00 per sq kil
    As you can see Cem France has a similar population with nearly three times the area. Some would say that the UK is full!! We certainly can’t afford to cope with mass immigration. Our Public Services just won’t cope. There are some in the UK who say that immigration is good for us and that immigrants earn money and pay taxes. Unfortunately that is only half the argument as our Public Services have to pick up the costs for interpreters because so many people are unable to understand English. This has a spin off effect in our Schools where some Primary Schools 5-11 years of age have as many as 34 languages spoken as the only language. Would it be racist not to want to send your child to schools like that? I hope you will agree the answer is no, which means in the fullness of time the area becomes a ghetto where no one integrates. I am all for immigration but at a speed that our Public Services can handle.
    You make a good point that indigenous Brits have been reluctant to do dirty jobs and we have relied on immigrants to handle this, originally from the West Indies. You say that there will be unskilled Turks in the country, possibly as I have no figures to hand but we certainly have our fair share of economic migrants who are unskilled. Add them to our own people who are unskilled and I hope that you will understand because of the size of the country that we need to control immigration and use something like the Australian system where people get points for skills required. I mentioned earlier that we have a different history and that the United Kingdom used to have an Empire and have a Commonwealth where cultural and trading ties should mean that they should be considered when we are looking for people. (India, Pakistan, Canada, Australia, New Zealand plus half of Africa and the Caribbean). Brits with relations in these countries should not just be abandoned.
    The other problem is the terrorist group the PKK. The EU has to help Turkey to destroy it. But what has the EU done so far? (Well according to an article of EurActiv Turkey (that dealt with the analysis of a Turkish expert), the PKK will be destroyed next year).
    I am not qualified to comment but as Britain has found terrorism is not easily defeated and perhaps it would help Turkey to be more grown up and mature if they negotiated with the Kurdish People – just a thought, goes to human rights.
    By the way, the Turkish military doesn’t intervene in politics anymore. The queens and kings in the EU ought to do the same.
    The jury is still out on this one Cem, just because it is said does not mean it will happen or not happen. Not really too sure about you remark about kings and queens as I thought that most people would be aware that the various Royal Families around Europe are Constitutional Monarchs and mainly have ceremonial duties. Whether you agree with it or not is another matter but we find them quite handy for attracting tourists. Whether we have Royal Heads of States or an elected President is for the people of each country and not a matter for the EU.
    I don’t get your point about the EU needing Turkey with in excess of 500 million in the EU I don’t think it will make too much difference either way. Whatever happens we will still trade if it is to every ones benefit.
    Whatever way it turns out Turkey will only be able to join if they can get Germany and France onside. I don’t think they UK will be able to do much other than support your cause.

    Best Regards Cem and good Luck!
    George Mc

  4. Good afternoon George,

    at first, it is too easy to make a diversion!

    I quote you:

    You say “Let’s recall that the EEC was created in 1957.… after World War II.
    If – after World War II – France or the Netherlands had organised a referendum and that the question was: “Do you want to unite with Germany and create the EEC?”, would their citizens have voted “Yes”? Let’s be clear, if referenda were organised the EEC/EU would have never existed.”
    With respect my friend you argument on this one is full of holes. Six countries started the European Coal and Steel community which later became the EEC (a trading club) which The UK joined in 1973 after it was approved in a referendum.

    The EEC was created in 1957, no mistake about that. Do you see any mistake or holes? I don’t see any. And my argument is crystal clear. Most of the French citizens would have voted against the creation of the EEC with Germany.

    Cem it is what has happened since then that is a problem for a lot of UK citizens. We have now become the European Union after god knows how many treaties that have eroded the Sovereignty of the UK people and Parliament. At no time have any of our political leaders asked us if it is okay with the people. The mother of parliaments has somehow been sidelined on this one. No politician has had the courage to put in place a period (let us say 6 months) where there could be a National discussion supported by politicians and academics who could using the press and our national Broadcaster (BBC) to put the case for and against.

    I understand your frustration.

    I quote you:

    You say “The European democracy has then pronounced itself at another level. If the EU signed in 1963, 1999 and 2004, it’s because it considers Turkey as a European country. The decisions were already made, we can’t call into question democracy. The EU is a democracy, isn’t it?”

    It is revealing that you didn’t quote the full sentence about the EU Parliament (the direct representative of the EU citizens) that massively supported the opening of the EU-Turkey negotiations.

    Cem, I am not so sure that the EU is a democracy using my understanding of the word. I will admit my friend that I am not an export on continental Europe but I do know that it would be a remarkable citizen in the UK who would have a clue who his/her MEP is (1-10/20 if we were lucky). What I am saying about Brussels and the UK MEP’s is that we very rarely send anyone with any ability to Brussels. It is a place to get rid of people who are a nuisance or rewarded for toeing the party line and being put out to grass. If it were not for the enormous salary and expenses that they receive they would all prefer to be in the Westminster parliament if they were good enough. I think they have all tried and failed! Cem, how can anyone in all honesty justify the appointment and position of Catherine Ashton. This is not about personalities it is about the EU appointing someone to a supposed important job, who has never stood in an election before the people in her life.

    You are right, the situation is ridiculous. Let’s add Van Rompuy to that circus. The EU is far from being a democracy, but the EEC/EU has maintained the peace for several decades.

    This is not a view that I have arrived at without pain as I have subjected myself to hours of the European Parliament via the BBC and EuroparlTV. What this means Cem is that I must support the UK parliament as the alternative is too awful to contemplate.

    I understand you. The EU is not perfect but the peace in Europe (and the world) has a cost. That’s why I support Turkey’s EU membership. For world peace. Nevertheless, look at the catastrophic USA. Their system is far worst than ours. Let’s have hope: the EU will change one day.

    I quote you:

    MEP’s and unelected Commissioners are very good at referring to “their citizens” and what is best for them. Just don’t let them express an opinion which could be considered inconvenient or ‘of message’.

    The christian democrats, the UMP and the extremists (mainly) within the EU Parliament have declared the war against Turkey (it is not a fight, it is well and truly a war). With the Greek and Greek Cypriots, they shamelessly attack Turkey from dawn to dusk. An Italian politician said that the Greeks only deal with Turkey at the EU Parliament and that a sociological study should be launched. And an adviser of a member of the EU Parliament said that every time a dossier about Turkey is discussed at the EU Parliament everything is done so that the dossier is concluded negatively. “Difficult to understand”, he said.

    You say that the EU problems are not the responsibility of Turkey. I agree.
    The politicians who have been hell bent on a European State have managed that all by themselves over the last 40 years.

    George the EU can also do the best: http://turkey.blogactiv.eu/2011/06/09/the-eu-book/

    You then quoted some parts of my comment:

    I hesitated whether or not to approve your comment also because its last sentence about the new citizens with the right skills creates confusion and leads me to deduce that it conveys racism. I hope I’m wrong.

    I am not the only one who says that. Several politicians warned that the EU is ageing. The EU needs a labour force of at least 50 million people. So what do you suggest? South America will not be enough to meet the EU’s needs! But maybe that you would want to add also Australia and New Zealand instead of Turkey!

    Well do you mean that the Turks are not skilled or educated? That sentence may be synonymous with racism. I hope I’m wrong.

    There certainly must be unskilled Turkish-rooted citizens in the UK. But how many are they? Did you count them?! But is there not unskilled people among the native citizens of the UK too?

    George, there are some immigrants who don’t integrate but that failure can’t take hostage all the immigrants. Anyway, some of those who are not skilled have no choice but the “dirty jobs”, haven’t they?

    And you answered:

    Finally on this part of your post Cem, I am unable to prove that I am not racist however over the years I have found that in the UK if someone disagrees with you on immigration they tend to call you a racist. Although not always, this tends to reflect someone who has lost the argument and throws it in as a departing comment, people should not be ignored or sidelined or disrespected just because their views may be different.

    Well I haven’t lost the argument (besides you didn‘t give answers to most of my arguments), but George what you wrote is suspicious: “If required we will be able to find many new citizens from around the world with the right skills.”

    In other words you mean that the Turks are not skilled. If that is not racism, what is it? Prejudices? Ignorance? Well I didn’t write that you are racist, you ought to read again my comment because I wrote: “That sentence may be synonymous with racism. I hope I’m wrong.”.

    I quote you:

    One of the problems we have coming from different countries is we tend to have different culture and in some cases, values. It is therefore difficult for me (without boring you rigid) to explain my remarks about picking and choosing who has the right to enter the UK.
    Obviously under the current arrangements virtually anyone from the EU can come here. However please I beg of you, remember how small the UK is.
    UK 243,610 sq kil
    Population 62,262,000
    Density 255.6 per sq kil
    France 674,843 sq kil
    Population 65,821,885
    Density 116.00 per sq kil
    As you can see Cem France has a similar population with nearly three times the area. Some would say that the UK is full!! We certainly can’t afford to cope with mass immigration. Our Public Services just won’t cope. There are some in the UK who say that immigration is good for us and that immigrants earn money and pay taxes. Unfortunately that is only half the argument as our Public Services have to pick up the costs for interpreters because so many people are unable to understand English. This has a spin off effect in our Schools where some Primary Schools 5-11 years of age have as many as 34 languages spoken as the only language. Would it be racist not to want to send your child to schools like that? I hope you will agree the answer is no, which means in the fullness of time the area becomes a ghetto where no one integrates. I am all for immigration but at a speed that our Public Services can handle.
    You make a good point that indigenous Brits have been reluctant to do dirty jobs and we have relied on immigrants to handle this, originally from the West Indies. You say that there will be unskilled Turks in the country, possibly as I have no figures to hand but we certainly have our fair share of economic migrants who are unskilled. Add them to our own people who are unskilled and I hope that you will understand because of the size of the country that we need to control immigration and use something like the Australian system where people get points for skills required. I mentioned earlier that we have a different history and that the United Kingdom used to have an Empire and have a Commonwealth where cultural and trading ties should mean that they should be considered when we are looking for people. (India, Pakistan, Canada, Australia, New Zealand plus half of Africa and the Caribbean). Brits with relations in these countries should not just be abandoned.

    I agree that immigration has to be controlled, I didn’t write anything against that. Turkey too has that problem, there are also many illegals in Turkey. But to believe that millions of Turks will invade the EU is a groundless fear. Anyway, when Turkey is a member it will have to wait several years so that its citizens can move freely within the EU. Well the UK (as well as other EU members) can control immigration and suggest quotas. Thus there is not any problem about a possible huge immigration from Turkey. By the way, let’s remember the immigrants who work hard in industry, let’s remember for instance the Turks who succeed at BBC. There are immigrants who don’t integrate but let’s not forget loads of immigrants who succeed. Interesting: according to EurActiv Turkey last year 30 000 Turks left Turkey for Germany and 40 000 Turks left Germany for Turkey.

    Then you quoted me:

    The other problem is the terrorist group the PKK. The EU has to help Turkey to destroy it. But what has the EU done so far? (Well according to an article of EurActiv Turkey (that dealt with the analysis of a Turkish expert), the PKK will be destroyed next year).

    And you wrote:

    I am not qualified to comment but as Britain has found terrorism is not easily defeated and perhaps it would help Turkey to be more grown up and mature if they negotiated with the Kurdish People – just a thought, goes to human rights.

    You don’t know Turkey. The Kurdish issue and the PKK are two separate problems:

    http://turkey.blogactiv.eu/2010/09/01/the-kurdish-issue-and-the-terrorist-group-the-pkk-two-different-problems/

    http://turkey.blogactiv.eu/2010/12/01/the-kurdish-issue-and-the-pkk-terrorism-two-different-issues-episode-ii/

    The PKK terrorists don’t represent the Kurdish-rooted Turkish citizens. The Kurdish issue is resolved: there is a national Kurdish TV that broadcasts every time, the Kurdish language is taught at schools and universities. There are nearly 100 Kurdish-rooted Turkish deputies at the Turkish assembly. A few former presidents of Turkey were of Kurdish origin. So where’s the problem regarding the Kurdish-rooted citizens? Lastly, thanks to its new constitution that will be ready next year, Turkey will be democratically stronger than ever. No Kurdish issue anymore. But a PKK terrorist issue.

    You quoted me:

    By the way, the Turkish military doesn’t intervene in politics anymore. The queens and kings in the EU ought to do the same.

    You answered:

    The jury is still out on this one Cem, just because it is said does not mean it will happen or not happen. Not really too sure about you remark about kings and queens as I thought that most people would be aware that the various Royal Families around Europe are Constitutional Monarchs and mainly have ceremonial duties. Whether you agree with it or not is another matter but we find them quite handy for attracting tourists. Whether we have Royal Heads of States or an elected President is for the people of each country and not a matter for the EU.

    At first, many queens and kings of the EU do intervene in politics and make speeches, but no one is disturbed in the EU. Secondly, since it is not a matter for the EU, why has the EU called into question the role of the military in politics in Turkey for many years? Double standards. But as I wrote, the military don’t intervene anymore. That was one of the most sensitive issues about Turkey’s EU membership. But now that Turkey resolved that issue, the EU tries to find other reasons in order to make a diversion and sabotage Turkey’s EU membership. Diversion is the strategy of the anti-Turkey circles.

    I quote you:

    I don’t get your point about the EU needing Turkey with in excess of 500 million in the EU I don’t think it will make too much difference either way. Whatever happens we will still trade if it is to every ones benefit.
    Whatever way it turns out Turkey will only be able to join if they can get Germany and France onside. I don’t think they UK will be able to do much other than support your cause.

    On the one hand, the EU will need a foreign labour force of at least 50 million people. That means people outside the EU frontiers. Outside the EU frontiers. Since Turkey is a candidate country to the EU, it would be really curious but also very revealing if the EU didn’t ask Turkey to provide it with workers. It would mean that the EU doesn’t want of Muslim workers. That would be racism. Islamophobia is a dangerous disease. It is not contagious though many people are infected.

    On the other hand, if you had read carefully my previous comment (you seem not to have taken it into account), you would have noticed that France and Germany (Jacques Chirac and Gerard Schröder) signed and recognised Turkey as an official candidate to the EU in 1999 and decided in 2004 to open the EU-Turkey negotiations one year later.

    Last but not least, Turkey has very well-educated people who are appreciated:

    http://turkey.blogactiv.eu/2011/09/20/kemal-dervis-turkey%e2%80%99s-future-is-highly-promising/

    I invite you to read especially the “PPS” of that post.

    You eventually wrote:

    Just an after thought. If you were to ask me where I would like to see the UK then I think we should be more like Norway and also take some of the decisions given to Brussel back to Westminster.

    I think we will get the opportunity as new treaties will eventually have to be signed and our price for consent would be repatriating rights.

    Personally, I support Turkey’s EU membership but I don’t want Turkey to contribute to the EU budget. As for the euro, I will see.

    Yours sincerely,

    Cem

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