Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Saturday criticized a European Parliament report on the country’s EU accession talks and threatened to “break away” from the bloc.
Questioned by journalists about the report, Erdoğan said that “the EU is trying to separate from Turkey,” according to the Turkish state agency Anadolu.
“We will make our assessments based on these developments and, if necessary, we can separate from the EU,” Erdoğan said before a trip to attend the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
The European Parliament’s report, adopted this week in Strasbourg, said talks on Ankara’s accession to the bloc should not be resumed under current circumstances, expressing EU concerns about violations of human rights and the rule of law. Instead, European lawmakers advocated finding “a parallel and realistic framework” for relations between Brussels and Ankara.
“We have recently seen renewed interest on the part of the Turkish government in reviving the EU accession process,” the lead legislator on the file, Spanish socialist Nacho Sánchez Amor, said after the report’s adoption on Wednesday.
“This will not happen due to geopolitical negotiations, but only when the Turkish authorities show a real interest in stopping the continued decline of fundamental freedoms and the rule of law in the country,” Sánchez Amor said.
Ties between Tukrey and the EU have deteriorated amid Erdoğan’s increasingly autocratic behavior following a failed coup attempt in 2016.
Talks on Turkey’s accession to the bloc have been stalled for years. However, in July EU foreign ministers agreed to press ahead with relations.