Motion for a resolution - B8-1283/2016Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on EU-Turkey relations

22.11.2016 - (2016/2993(RSP))

to wind up the debate on the statement by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
pursuant to Rule 123(2) of the Rules of Procedure

Gianni Pittella, Kati Piri, Knut Fleckenstein, Nikos Androulakis, Zigmantas Balčytis, Brando Benifei, José Blanco López, Vilija Blinkevičiūtė, Nicola Caputo, Nicola Danti, Isabella De Monte, Jean-Paul Denanot, Doru-Claudian Frunzulică, Lidia Joanna Geringer de Oedenberg, Sylvie Guillaume, Liisa Jaakonsaari, Agnes Jongerius, Eva Kaili, Miapetra Kumpula-Natri, Cécile Kashetu Kyenge, Marju Lauristin, Krystyna Łybacka, Costas Mavrides, Alessia Maria Mosca, Demetris Papadakis, Emilian Pavel, Pina Picierno, Miroslav Poche, Gabriele Preuß, Monika Smolková, Tibor Szanyi, Paul Tang, Marc Tarabella, Elena Valenciano on behalf of the S&D Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B8-1276/2016

Procedure : 2016/2993(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on EU-Turkey relations


The European Parliament,

–  having regard to its previous resolutions, in particular those of 27 October 2016 on the situation of journalists in Turkey[1] and of 14 April 2016 on the 2015 report on Turkey[2],

–  having regard to the EU Negotiation Framework for Turkey, of 3 October 2005,

–  having regard to the annual progress report on Turkey for 2016, published by the Commission on 9 November 2016 (SWD(2016)0366),

–  having regard to the Council conclusions on Turkey of 18 July 2016,

–  having regard to Regulation (EU) No 231/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 March 2014 establishing an Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA II)[3],

–  having regard to the right to freedom of expression enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Turkey is a state party,

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas the European Union and the European Parliament have strongly condemned the failed military coup in Turkey and recognised the legitimate responsibility of the Turkish authorities to prosecute those responsible and involved in this attempt;

B.  whereas Turkey is a candidate country of the European Union; whereas the Turkish Government’s repressive measures under the state of emergency are disproportionate and in breach of basic rights and freedoms protected by the Turkish Constitution, in breach of democratic values on which the European Union is founded, and of the ICCPR; whereas since the coup the authorities have arrested 10 members of the Turkish Grand National Assembly and some 150 journalists – the highest number in the world; whereas 2 386 judges and prosecutors and 40 000 other people have been detained, of whom more than 31 000 remain under arrest; whereas 129 000 public employees either remain suspended (66 000) or have been dismissed (63 000), most of whom have had no charges brought against them to date;

C.  whereas President Erdoğan and the Turkish Government have made repeated statements on the reintroduction of the death penalty; whereas the Council in its conclusions of 18 July 2016 on Turkey recalled that the unequivocal rejection of the death penalty is an essential element of the Union acquis;

D.  whereas serious concerns have been raised over the conditions of those detained and arrested following the coup, with allegations of torture and mistreatment, over the wide-scale dismissal of state officials, who are still awaiting a fair trial, and over the severe restrictions on freedom of expression and on the press and media in Turkey, as a result of which there are hardly any independent media left;

E.  whereas paragraph 5 of the Negotiating Framework for Accession Negotiations with Turkey stipulates that the Commission, ‘in the case of a serious and persistent breach of the principles of liberty, democracy, respect for human rights, fundamental freedoms and the rule of law, will recommend the suspension of negotiations and propose the conditions for their resumption’; whereas Turkey no longer sufficiently meets the Copenhagen criteria, as it does not respect the values of Article 2 of the Treaty on European Union; whereas a temporary halt to negotiations would entail the current talks being frozen, no new chapters being opened and no new initiatives being undertaken in relation to Turkey’s EU accession;

1.  Strongly condemns the disproportionate repressive measures under way in Turkey since the failed military takeover in July; calls on the Commission and the Member States to initiate a temporary freeze on the ongoing accession negotiations until the Turkish Government returns to the path of respect for the rule of law and human rights; remains committed, however, to keeping Turkey anchored to the EU and is convinced that the place for a democratic Turkey is within the EU; reiterates the EU’s commitment to positive and strategic cooperation with Turkey;

2.  Commits to reviewing its position on the temporary freeze of the accession talks when the state of emergency in Turkey is lifted;

3.  Reiterates that the reintroduction of capital punishment by the Turkish Government would lead to a formal suspension of the accession process;

4.  Underlines that work on visa liberalisation will only happen when Turkey adequately fulfils all the conditions set out in the visa liberalisation agenda;

5.  Asks the Commission to consider the implications which suspension of the funding provided to Turkey under the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA II) would have, taking into account the influence of this decision on the country’s civil society; calls on the Commission also to reflect on the latest developments in Turkey in the mid‑term review report on the IPA scheduled for 2017;

6.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the Government and Parliament of Turkey, the governments and parliaments of the Member States and the European External Action Service.