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From the Archive
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MATIERE A REFLEXION
Turkey and the EU


Turkey and the EU
In 1963, Turkey was accepted by the EU as an associate member of the European Community (EC). Since then, Turkey has been fighting for its full membership. While awaiting a decision about its admittance, Turkey was disappointed by the EU’ admitting Austria, Finland, Norway, and Sweden. In order to objectively evaluate the EU situation I will first mention the criteria’s that qualify or disqualify a country to the EU:
1- Establishing of a functioning and stable democratic regime.
2- Adoption of a market-oriented capitalist economy.
3- Acceptance of the acquis communautaire.
Turkey has a history with the military, but it was resolved and now it is considered one of the new democracies of the world. So to some extent it meets the first requirement. Generally, Turkey has a relatively underdeveloped economy comparing to the EU members, besides its high rate of population growth. The other side here is that few of the newly admitted member of the EU were relatively economically underdeveloped than the original member. Finally, For sure Turkey will accept the acquis communautaire.
For sure, there are some other reasons for the delay in the EU’ decision. Some say it is the history between Turkey and Greece-which is a member of the EU. Others think it is the anti-immigrant feeling directed against Moslems from North Africa and Turkey. Regardless of how true this assumptions, it raises some very important questions. It is the fact that a geographically European country (Turkey) is waiting to be admitted as European. Who get to decide the identity of a country? How could outsiders decide the identity of Turkey? Shouldn’t the EU be for “All Europeans?”
On the other hand, the EU can never absorb all the Europeans countries, at least for the time being. If it does, it will collapse and fail to satisfy its basic needs and purposes. Still the distinction and double measuring between the countries is completely unacceptable. The afraid of the inflation of the EU is completely out of the picture because the EU is admitting new countries, while Turkey is still waiting. The EU has to decide right away about Turkey’s acceptance with yes or no and with the explanation and justification of its decision.
Finally, I’m myself for the acceptance of Turkey as an EU member. Not because it successfully made its transition for democracy, nor because of its developing economy. I would explain my inclination towards Turkey’s position is because of it has the lower hand. The EU can easily decide the Turkey is not “European,” and Turkey would have nothing to do against that.

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