The EU, like Condoleeza Rice, would apparently prefer Turkey as an Islamic state to Turkey as a secular state under military rule.
By Amberin Zaman and Damien McElroy in the Telegraph, with thanks to D:
The European Union warned the Turkish military yesterday that its interference in the country’s politics could jeopardise its chances of joining the EU.
“The EU is founded on the principles of liberty, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, the rule of law, and the supremacy of democratic civilian power over the military,” Olli Rehn, the EU enlargement commissioner, said in a statement.
“If a country wants to become a member of the Union, it needs to respect these principles.”
The comments came after Turkey’s prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, asked parliament to call a general election in July, five months early, after the country’s highest court annulled a vote to choose a new president.
The army warned at the weekend that it would intervene if Abdullah Gul, the ruling AK party’s foreign minister, was made president.
Opposition leaders fear Mr Gul’s election would enable the government to pursue an “Islamic agenda” it has so far kept in the shadows….
Onur Oymen, the hawkish deputy chairman of the main opposition Republican People’s Party, said the secular basis of the Turkish state was the true guarantee of democracy.
“You can’t have democracy without secularism,” he said. “The notion of moderate Islam to check radical Islam is nonsense. This idea being promoted by certain countries should be abandoned.”