Cyprus Issue May Be Serious Obstacle On Turkey’s Way To EU


17.10.2006 14:41 GMT+04:00

/PanARMENIAN.Net/ Claims are being made that the Cyprus problem could
derail Turkey’s admission as a member of the EU by the end of the
year. The Financial Times newspaper warned that the ensuing risks
would be huge. "In Turkey, it could halt the country’s cultural march
westward, which began 80 years ago under the rule of Kemal Ataturk,
and instead empower Islamist and nationalist political forces." The
Financial Times published a commentary by Vicent Bonland and Kerin Hope
on the Cyprus problem and Turkey’s EU negotiation process. Reserving
a page for the issue, the newspaper reported that the Cyprus problem
could be set as a precondition for Turkey to take further steps towards
integration. "While a row between the Turkish and French last week
over recognition of the Armenian Genocide has put another formidable
obstacle in the way of Turkey joining the EU, Cyprus poses a much more
immediate difficulty. It is possible that, by the end of this year,
the problem will derail the admission of Turkey as an EU member,"
the newspaper wrote.

The Financial Times also wrote that many EU diplomats now admit that
it was a mistake to accept Greek Cypriot membership into the EU, as
Turkey accuses the Union of reneging on promises to end the isolation
of Turkish Cyprus. According to diplomats, the Turkish government,
which will hold a general election next year, is stuck between refusing
to make further compromises on Cyprus and keeping its EU negotiations
on track.

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