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Following today's presentation of the enlargement package by the European Commission, S&D MEP and rapporteur on Turkey Kati Piri said:

"The annual Turkey report of the European Commission reflects the dire situation and the serious backlash of the rule of law in the country. For the last three years, Turkey has been drifting away more and more from European values such as the respect for human rights and media freedom. While the heinous coup attempt on 15 July needs to be strongly condemned and its perpetrators brought to justice, we see that the state of emergency is being used to further suppress any critical voices left.

"Almost all critical media outlets have been closed and Turkey is again the world's top jailer of journalists; more than 100.000 people have been dismissed and 35.000 arrested without due process – among them 1/3 of all the judges and prosecutors, elected mayors are replaced by appointed trustees and 10 members of parliament have been jailed for using their freedom of expression.

"While the S&D Group remains committed to keeping Turkey anchored to the EU, we also believe that the EU must draw political consequences from the current situation. The government in Ankara is shutting the door to the European Union with its actions. In reaction, the EU has to immediately freeze the accession talks until the Turkish government returns to the path of respect for the rule of law and human rights.

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