S&Ds condemn Erdoğan’s anti-democratic actions and encourage Turkish people to remain close to the EU

No link between EU-Turkey accession talks and refugee action plan, say S&Ds, S&D MEP and EP rapporteur Kati Piri , PKK´s return to violence, migration, asylum, Schengen area for Turkey, human rights in Turkey,

Following the debate in the European Parliament this afternoon on Turkey-EU relations, the European Parliament's lead negotiator on Turkey, S&D MEP Kati Piri said:
 
"Turkey-EU relations are on the European Council's agenda in October. Therefore it is worth remembering that last July a large majority in the European Parliament called for the formal suspension of accession talks with Turkey if the constitutional amendments are implemented unchanged.
 
"The S&Ds cannot tolerate the constant breaches of fundamental rights without any consequences. President Erdoğan is responsible for the poor democratic state Turkey is in and as an EU candidate country this must have consequences.
 
"While it is clear that under this government Turkey does not uphold even the minimum human-rights standards, the EU should not take away the possibility of a European future for the Turkish people. Change is possible, in Turkey too."

S&D vice-president Victor Boştinaru added:
 
"Today we have a political system in Turkey that views divergence of opinion and critical stances as the greatest evil. We have 160 journalists in jail – both Turkish and European citizens – together with  thousands of academics, with no charges against them or trials proceeding. Of course there is no way we can accept that. The European Parliament already made its position clear last July.

"We also have to consider that the day we have no more dialogue and leverage with Turkey things can get worse. Turkey is an important country with a very diverse society that includes a lot of people attached to EU values. We have to stand by them, continue to be vigilant and firm on human rights, freedom and democracy, while maintaining a regular and constructive dialogue."