Turkey opposes EU-NATO agreement

Turkey opposes understanding on access of EU forces to NATO assets and planning; EU expects resolution from NATO Summit

Turkey has been blocking the agreement for months, demanding
a decision-making role in the fledgling EU defence initiative.
Ankara wants to be automatically invited to participate in any EU
military operation in the region or which concerns Turkey’s
security interests. The understanding, proposed at the Budapest
meeting, says that non-EU NATO members would be consulted in a
“committee of contributors”.

However, despite initial approval from Ankara,
the agreement now appears to be unacceptable because it “did not
fully address Turkey’s security needs”, according to a Turkish
official, quoted by the Financial Times.


Turkish authorities oppose an understanding on the access of
EU rapid reaction forces to NATO assets and planning capabilities,
proposed at the NATO foreign ministers meeting on 29 May in
Budapest. According to an article in the Financial Times, a senior
Turkish official said that the agreement was not acceptable because
it did not meet Turkey's demands.


While there was no progress on this issue during the NATO
defence ministers meeting in Brussels on 7 June, the EU hopes the
deadlock will be broken by US President George W. Bush at the NATO
summit in Brussels on 13 June.


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