The bloc’s foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell spoke at the plenary session of the European Parliament on Tuesday has assured the legislator that the provocations of Turkey in the Eastern Mediterranean and in the occupied part of Northern Cyprus are still “high” on the EU agenda.
In early October, the union’s top diplomat issued a statement on behalf of the bloc calling for the immediate reversal of Turkish actions in occupied Northern Cyprus after authorities reopened the abandoned coastal city of Varosha.
The message was clearly conveyed to both Turkey and Turkey [Ersin] Tatar, ”said Borrell on Tuesday, stressing that Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s recent“ picnic ”in Varosha and his approval of a two-state solution in the country are hampering the resumption of the Cypriot settlement talks.
He also reiterated the EU’s support for the reunification of the island on the basis of a bi-zonal bi-communal federation in line with the UN framework, although Tatar, the recently elected President of the Turkish Cypriot government, had made comments following Ankara’s approach.
“A stable and safe environment in the Eastern Mediterranean, along with the constructive cooperation between all parties involved is in the strategic interest of the EU, ”said Borrell, adding that the Union is ready to play an“ active role ”in supporting negotiations.
The EU Council will assess the situation in the Eastern Mediterranean and the bloc’s relations with Turkey in mid-December, and the matter will “remain high on the collective agenda,” he added.
Commenting on the upcoming meeting of EU heads of state and government with Erdogan’s “nationalist and revisionist playbook”, Katalin Cseh, Vice-President of the Renew Europe Group, said that the “EU is sending Turkey a strong signal for violations of international law and sovereignty must the member is not tolerated. “
Cseh also supported that the Council should consider “targeted sanctions” if the Turkish President refuses to resolve the issue through “constructive dialogue”.
Similarly, David McAllister of the European People’s Party (EPP) said that Ankara must refrain from unilateral provocations and change its policy “substantially”, otherwise “sanctions must remain an option”.