Turkey

Non-discrimination 24-06-2021

Row over Hungary’s LGBTQ law blows EU summit off course

Controversy over a new Hungarian law banning LGBTQ references in school materials is threatening to overshadow an EU summit on Thursday and Friday (24-25 June) intended to focus on foreign policy issues: confronting Russia and tricky ties with Turkey.
Non-discrimination 21-06-2021

Turkish women rally in defense of Istanbul Convention

Hundreds of women rally in Istanbul on Saturday (19 June), urging President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to reverse his decision to withdraw from a Council of Europe anti-violence treaty ahead of a formal exit on1 July.

Turkey hosts 15% of world’s refugees, UN report finds

Turkey continued to be the largest refugee hosting country in the world, accounting for nearly 3.7 million refugees, or 15% of all people displaced across borders globally, according to a new report published on Friday by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). 

Turkey’s participation request in EU military project apprehended as ‘Trojan horse’

NATO member Turkey has submitted an application to participate in one of the EU's Dutch-led military project on military mobility, despite tense relations with Greece and Cyprus. While the request is being reviewed, EU diplomats are split over Ankara's possible participation.
Global Europe 12-05-2021

Italian and Turkish fishing boats in skirmish off Cyprus

A skirmish broke out between Turkish and Italian fishermen near the divided Mediterranean island of Cyprus on Tuesday, the Italian navy said on Tuesday (11 May). The navy said in a statement that people on board an unspecified number of...
Global Europe 27-04-2021

UN chief urges ‘be creative’ as Cyprus talks open

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged Turkish and Greek Cypriot parties to "be creative" on Tuesday (27 April), hours before informal talks were set to begin on the island's future after a four-year hiatus.
Global Europe 26-04-2021

MEP: EU Council is ‘obliged’ to introduce democracy conditionality with Turkey

All aspects of the EU’s relationship with Turkey should introduce the question of democratic conditionality, a leading MEP has told EURACTIV. “The Council is obliged by our treaties to stand for our values. This is not only the role of...
Global Europe 26-04-2021

‘Common ground’ elusive as Cyprus rivals head to Geneva

Four years after their last peace talks failed, rival Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot leaders meet in Geneva next week to explore elusive “common ground” on the divided Mediterranean island. “We go to Geneva… steadfastly committed to resuming negotiations for...
Global Europe 22-04-2021

Biden expected to recognize massacre of Armenians as genocide

US President Joe Biden is expected to formally recognize the massacre of Armenians by the Ottoman Empire during World War One as an act of genocide, a move likely to infuriate Turkey.
Global Europe 16-04-2021

Greek, Turkish ministers clash at heated Ankara presser

The foreign ministers of Greece and Turkey on Thursday (15 April) clashed on a wide range of issues during a heated news conference that underscored the trouble the two historic rivals will have at mending their broken ties.
Global Europe 15-04-2021

Turkey frees journalist Altan after European rights court ruling

A Turkish court on Wednesday (14 April) released journalist and novelist Ahmet Altan after more than four years in prison on charges of involvement in a failed 2016 coup attempt that he had always denied.
Global Europe 14-04-2021

Diplomatic double whammy as EU overtures rebuffed by Turkey, Russia

The EU's hopes of rapprochements with Turkey and Russia have been rebuffed. But these diplomatic defeats have been years in the making, writes Robert Ellis.
Global Europe 09-04-2021

Protocol scandal symbolises the state of EU-Turkey relations, EU lawmaker says

We shouldn't place "sofa-gate" into the epicentre of a plenary debate, but rather discuss how to rebuild relations with Turkey under a President who no longer has a commitment toward a European future, a leading MEP told EURACTIV.
Global Europe 09-04-2021

Italy’s Draghi accuses ‘dictator’ Erdogan, Turkey condemns the ‘ugly’ remarks

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi on Thursday (8 April) accused Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of humiliating European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen this week and said it is important to be frank with "dictators", drawing condemnation from Ankara.
Global Europe 08-04-2021

‘Sofa-gate’ brings more headaches for the EU

The protocol scandal that overshadowed the EU leaders’ recent visit to Turkey keeps unfolding, raising questions about Council President Charles Michel's reaction, but also about the EU's consistency in asking Ankara to adhere to the Istanbul Convention.
Global Europe 07-04-2021

‘Divan-gate’: Brussels angry over von der Leyen Turkey chair snub

The European Commission hit out Wednesday (7 April) at a diplomatic snub that left its head Ursula von der Leyen without a chair as male counterparts sat down at a meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. 
Global Europe 07-04-2021

EU chiefs press Erdogan on rights while stressing better ties

The European Union's top two officials on Tuesday (6 April) expressed deep worries about human rights in Turkey while voicing hope for stronger ties in their first meeting in a year with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
Global Europe 06-04-2021

Jailed Kurdish leader calls on Turkish opposition to unite against Erdogan

Former pro-Kurdish party leader Selahattin Demirtaş, jailed since 2016 despite Western calls for his release, said the Turkish opposition should unite against rising oppression and moves to divide them, including a court case to ban his party.
Global Europe 06-04-2021

EU chiefs in rare Turkey visit to revamp relations

The European Union's top two officials will pay a rare visit on Tuesday (6 April) to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan aimed at testing his avowed commitment to improve uneasy ties.
Global Europe 26-03-2021

EU dangles carrots for Turkey if ‘de-escalation sustained’

European Union leaders are ready to boost cooperation with Turkey if a "current de-escalation is sustained", they said in a video summit on Thursday (25 March) following a spike in tensions.
Global Europe 24-03-2021

US, NATO have strong interest in keeping Turkey close, says Blinken

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Tuesday (23 March) pledged to rebuild and revitalise the transatlantic military alliance after a bruising four years when Washington portrayed NATO as outdated, divided and in crisis. The first top US official to...
Global Europe 24-03-2021

Greece, Cyprus frown at ‘too many carrots’ in draft EU declaration on Turkey

A common EU declaration on Turkey currently under discussion ahead of the EU summit on 25-26 March “does not reflect” the balanced approach of EU top diplomat Josep Borrell recent report, Athens and Nicosia have said.
Global Europe 22-03-2021

LEAK: Borrell report suggests new carrot-and-stick approach for Turkey

Turkey will be invited to follow a path of dialogue and reap some economic benefits, or move further away from Europe and face consequences, the EU's chief diplomat wrote in his Turkey report, set to be discussed by EU leaders later this week, according to a draft report seen by EURACTIV.
Elections 22-03-2021

US, Europe press Turkey to rethink ditching of Istanbul Convention

US and European leaders denounced what they called Turkey's baffling and concerning decision to pull out of an international accord designed to protect women from violence, and urged President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to reconsider.