The year 2020 was difficult for relations between Turkey and the European Union, but now a window of opportunity appeared for a renewed dialogue between Ankara and Brussels, Foreign Minister Mevlüt CavuSoGlu said on Jan. 27.
We believe a genuine Turkey-EU partnership can bring about real changes in vital areas, including migration, trade, energy, security, and defense, as well as Syria, Libya, the Balkans, Caucasus, and other issues,” CavuSoglu said, addressing an online meeting with his Dutch counterpart, Stef Blok, during the 8th bilateral Wittenburg Conference.
Cavusoglu said the past year had been a difficult one that : tested our relations with Europe.
However, he said the EU “extended a hand to Turkey at the December summit” and Ankara “responded favorably” to the gesture.
Stressing the need to capitalize on this new chance for constructive dialogue, Cavusoglu, who visited EU officials in Brussels last week, said the two sides have “decided to work on a roadmap of concrete steps with timelines.”
Reaffirming Ankara’s readiness for “a true partnership as a candidate country,” he stressed that Turkey has “the highest level of commitment” when it comes to improving ties with the bloc.
Towards this end, he added, Ankara has this week resumed exploratory talks with Greece, initiated efforts to normalize ties with France, and launched a domestic reforms drive.
We have already proven what this partnership is capable of during the refugee crisis of 2016. It was thanks to joint efforts by Turkey and the EU that we were able to manage Europe’s worst humanitarian crisis since World War II, said Cavusoglu