EU to announce critical report on Turkey

European Commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn will announce a report on Turkey’s accession process next week. The report is expected to include harsh criticisms against the Erdoğan government.

The countries report, previously called the progress report summarizes the developments in countries with ongoing EU accession negotiations, is prepared by bureaucrats responsible for the expansion of the union. The new report will be announced by European Commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn next Tuesday.

The report acts as a gradebook for countries that want to join the union and will include assessments on Turkey, Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Republic of Macedonia, Albania and Kosovo. Austrian news agency APA received information from behind the scenes in Brussels that the part about Turkey will include serious criticisms to the Ankara regime.

The report will include the view that the “separation of powers” is completely eroded in Turkey and will state that the law and justice are not independent anymore. The report will also argue the tension between Greece and Turkey needs to be resolved, and criticize the Erdoğan government for the invasion of Afrin.
But despite these criticisms, Brussels will still remain in favor of going forward with the refugee deal with the Erdoğan regime and the report will not pose any suggestions to change the EU position towards Turkey.

In other words, despite severe human rights violations and the invasion and massacres in Afrin, no sanctions, or an end to the accession process, are expected by the EU against the Erdoğan government in the short and medium term.

European Commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn will be announcing the report which will be the first EU report on Turkey following the coup attempt on July 15, 2016.


Meanwhile, discussions run hot on which countries will foot the bill for the 3 billion Euros allocated to Ankara as per the refugee deal between the EU and Turkey. According to prominent Austrian newspaper Der Standard, the Federal German Government led by Angela Merkel is dragging their foot to not pay their due.

Despite Germany having paid 500 million of the 3 billion Euros that have already been given to the Erdoğan regime, reports say Merkel is pressuring the European Commission to have the money come out of Brussels completely this time around.

European Union administrators and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan held a summit in Varna last March, and President of the European Commission Jean Claude Juncker spoke afterwards to announce that Ankara will receive the remaining 3 billion Euros as soon as possible as part of the refugee deal.

But, in the second year of the refugee deal, Turkey not spending the first 3 billion Euros on refugees has caused a crisis between Brussels and Berlin and other European capitals. Ankara was supposed to spend the 3 billion Euros on the health, education and employment costs of Syrian, Iraqi and Afghan refugees (numbered at around 3 milllion) but most of the projects that have already been paid for have remained just on paper, according to detailed reports in European press in recent days.