From EUBusiness, with thanks to Ali Dashti:
Adorned with Turkish and EU flags, Turkey’s newspapers hailed Thursday an official EU report recommending the country start talks to join the bloc, while largely ignoring the stringent conditions attached to the announcement.
“Yes! A new Turkey,” trumpeted the mass-circulation Sabah, while Milliyet declared: “Today is a more beautiful day.”
The biggest-selling Hurriyet underlined that the recommendation of the European Commission was the result of 41-year efforts by the country to integrate with Europe, going back as far as 1963 when Turkey first signed an association agreement with the pan-European bloc.
The daily’s chief columnist said Turkey had taken a huge step towards fulfilling the will of its founding father Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, who pointed to the west after establishing the modern republic on the ashes of the Ottoman Empire in 1923.
“It is the day that the great Ataturk should have been among us. He should have witnessed the most concrete result so far of the revolution he carried out 80 years ago,” Oktay Eksi wrote.
The conservative press also joined the celebration.
“A historical green light for Turkey,” the Zaman newspaper headlined, and the Islamist-leaning Yeni Safak said: “A visa for the final.”…
In its report on Turkey’s democratization process, the commission said Wednesday that the country had fulfilled the basic political norms required from candidate nations in order to start accession talks.
Hmmm. So building a regime on the murder and expulsion of millions of Christians, and a steady stream of keep-the-lion-at-bay concessions to political Islam and Sharia are just fine with the new Europe, eh? Well, they are certainly asking for what they will get from Turkey.
It said, however, that the eventual start of negotiations, to be decided by EU leaders on December 17, would not guarantee Turkey’s eventual membership.
It also warned it would recommend the suspension of the talks “in the case of a serious and persistent breach of the principles of liberty, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms and the rule of law on which the Union is founded.”
We’ll soon see just how strong those words really are.