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EU must react to pressure from Turkey

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15.09.2019

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is most dangerous when his back is against the wall. In the face of an economic downturn and signs of the political demise of his Justice and Development Party (AKP), he has fallen back on his default position for governing: threaten and extort. In everyday life this is known as bullying, and the EU has consistently backed down each time he has used the tactic.

Things are not well in Ankara

At the moment, a number of contradictory reports are coming out of Turkey. The Supreme Court of Appeals recently ordered the release of journalists from the Turkish daily newspaper Cumhuriyet, who had been jailed for supposed political crimes. Yet thousands more intellectuals, writers, and teachers still languish in Erdogan’s prisons.

DW's Barbara Wesel

Fears of human rights abuses have put Turkey’s EU accession talks with the EU on ice. But now the Turkish president has signaled he wants to speak with leaders in Brussels.

Erdogan wants to negotiate because he needs help. He is under enormous economic pressure, and any sign that the EU is open to maintaining a partnership would help Turkish financial markets. Years-old calls for modernizing the Turkish-EU customs union, progress in the deadlocked accession talks, and the possibility of another injection of billions of euros from Brussels are all on the........

© Deutsche Welle