Merkel says Germany ready to support Cyprus and help Turkey

Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi (19.10.15) reports that German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Sunday that her country is ready to extend support to Cyprus while helping drive forward Turkey’s European Union accession process.

Merkel held a joint news conference with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu in Istanbul on Sunday, after the two had a meeting on a number of issues, including the Syrian crisis and influx of refugees. The Chancellor made it clear that Germany would offer assistance to Ankara in exchange for Turkish help in stemming the flow of refugees to Europe.

Asked by reporters how Cyprus could be convinced to give the green light to Turkey’s path to the EU, Merkel said that Germany will offer support to Cyprus. “Of course, the consent of all member states is required for accession. Of course we will offer our support to Cyprus” Merkel said.

Reporting on the same issue, Hurriyet Daily News (19.10.15) reports that Merkel has pledged to give support to four Turkish demands on which Ankara has insisted in return for agreeing to a migrant action plan with the European Union.

“There are four elements. Germany is ready to give support on these issues,” Merkel said Oct. 18 during a joint press conference with her Turkish counterpart, Ahmet Davutoglu.

Davutoglu said Turkey was ready to work with Germany and the EU on the migration crisis and would take all measures to prevent human trafficking. However, Ankara is focused on four issues, the Prime Minister said: the opening of negotiation chapters, visa liberalization, the transfer of 3 billion euro from the EU to Turkey for migrant support and the invitation of Turkish leaders to EU summits.

Davutoglu stressed the “fair share of the burden” on the migration problem and welcomed Merkel’s approach on the issue, while noting that the figures were of secondary importance.

Davutoglu expressed Turkey’s expectation for the implementation of visa privileges for Turkish nationals by 2016, in return for a readmission agreement which would pave the way for the EU to send migrants back to Turkey. “In terms of the migration crisis, we seek to contribute a new vision to relations between the EU and Turkey and get out of its frozen situation,” he said.
“We agreed on accelerating the opening of negotiation chapters 17, 23, 24,” he said.

Expressing support for the Turkish demands, Merkel especially highlighted that they would work to open Chapter 17, and said they would “discuss” details on Chapters 23 and 24. The German Chancellor also reiterated her country’s longstanding hesitations about Turkey’s prospective membership in the Union and said, “Turkey’s full membership is an open-ended issue.”

The two leaders also discussed Syria, with Turkey informing the German Intelligence information.


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