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Strasbourg, 15 January 2014
EU-Turkey: First meeting with Minister M.Çavuşoğlu
The European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle and the Turkish Minister for EU Affairs and Chief Negotiator Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu met in Strasbourg for an open and constructive first meeting.
Commissioner Füle and Minister Çavuşoğlu agreed on the strategic ties that unite the EU and Turkey, the anchor of which are the accession negotiations: "Last year brought the momentum back to these negotiations" said Commissioner Füle. "It is precisely because of the importance of our relations that we discussed openly our concerns as regards the independence and impartiality of the judiciary".
Minister Çavuşoğlu informed Commissioner Füle about recent developments.
Commissioner Füle also recalled his previous statement that, as a candidate country committed to the political criteria of accession, the European Commission expected Turkey to take all necessary measures to ensure that recent allegations of corruption are addressed without discrimination or preference in a transparent and impartial manner.
Commissioner Füle expressed the expectation that any change to the judicial system must not call into question Turkey's commitment as regards the Copenhagen political criteria. Commissioner Füle asked Minister Çavuşoglu to convey this message to Ankara.
The European Commission will review the provisions of the latest draft legislation on the judiciary in Turkey and will share its views with the Turkish authorities before any vote on the draft law.