Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2004-12-15-Speech-3-034"

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"Ladies and gentlemen, the conclusions of the summit of the European Union to be held on 16 and 17 December are so important that they determine to a significant degree the physiognomy of the European Union. Enlargement, with the possible opening of negotiations with Turkey, requires decisions, the consequences of which will be decisive. We must clarify from the outset that we are not against Turkey's European prospects. We expect such prospects to bind any country pursuing such prospects within a minimum framework of obligations pertaining to basic issues which apply to the other Member States, such as fundamental freedoms, civil rights and workers' rights, without of course harbouring any illusions. However, these obligations must be laid down from the outset and be accepted by Turkey. How could it ever be possible for a candidate country to be allowed not to recognise the existence of another Member State and for this issue not to be clearly laid down at the summit? How will this question be answered if there is real equality between the Member States or if, ultimately, there are two sets of standards and two yardsticks? It is, in my opinion, a not only for there to be mutual recognition but also for there to be normalisation of relations between Cyprus and Turkey, not only because the European Union and the principles which govern its operation so command, but also because the Cyprus problem needs to be resolved in order for right to prevail for the benefit of our people, both Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots. No nation in the world wants the illegal occupation of and hatred and partition in their country and this cannot be perpetuated. The European Union must open a window for the safeguarding of the basic principles of its very existence and call for the application of this minimum framework of obligations and must also open a window for the simple citizens by showing that it does not take decisions using two sets of standards and two yardsticks. To close, I wish to condemn the arrogant conduct of the Turkish leadership and its government when, in the statements it makes, the impression is given that it is the European Union which is asking for Turkey to join and not Turkey which is asking to join the European Union."@en1

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