Spain hails 'last-minute goal' for Turkey in EU talks

The Spanish secretary said his country had worked hard from the outset to open negotiations with Turkey on new chapters.

Spain hails 'last-minute goal' for Turkey in EU talks

The Spanish secretary of state for the European Union (EU) compared on Wednesday EU's opening a new chapter with Turkey on the last day of the Spanish presidency of the
union as "Spain's kicking a last-minute goal for Turkey."

Diego Lopez Garrido, the Spanish Secretary of State for the European Union in the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, said Spain had worked till the last minute for Turkey.

"Thus, Spain has scored a last-minute goal for Turkey," Garrido told a press conference in Madrid.

The EU is expected to open negotiations with Turkey on "food safety, veterinary and phytosanitary policy" chapter later on Wednesday. Spain will hand over the rotating presidency of the EU to Belgium on July 1.

The Spanish secretary said his country had worked hard from the outset to open negotiations with Turkey on new chapters.

"Turkey-EU relations are strategic for us, and we have always backed Turkey's EU membership bid," Garrido said.

Garrido called on Turkey to fully implement Copenhagen criteria, but said the EU should continue opening negotiations on several chapters at the same time.

The Spanish secretary said the Greek Cypriot administration had a great effect on Turkey's negotiations with the EU, however Cyprus problem could not be solved in one day.

Garrido said the upcoming presidents of the EU, Belgium and Hungary (as of January 1, 2011) were thinking the same with Spain about opening negotiations with Turkey on new chapters.

However, Garrido said it was impossible to set a definite date on when Turkey would become an EU member.

Turkey is a candidate country for EU membership since the Helsinki European Council of December 1999. Accession negotiations started in October 2005 with the analytical examination of the EU legislation.


AA

Güncelleme Tarihi: 30 Haziran 2010, 16:36

SeydiAli

YORUM EKLE