Erdogan calls on EU not to delay Turkey’s accession to union
Azerbaijan, Baku, Feb. 4 /. Trend A.Tagiyeva /
Turkey has been waiting for the European Union's approval to its accession to the union for 50 years and the EU should do this as soon as possible, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is on an official visit to the Czech Republic, said, TRT Haber TV channel reported on Monday.
"We once again call on the EU not to delay Turkey's accession to the Union. Especially as about five million Turks currently reside there. We have actually been members of the EU for a long time in theory," Erdogan said.
He also noted that Turkey plans on joining the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), but it cannot be assumed that the SCO is an alternative to the EU .
Relations and cooperation between Turkey and the EU began with the signing of an agreement in 1964 in Ankara. The EU announced that the Copenhagen criteria set in 2002 is the key to Turkey's EU membership. Turkey carried out large judicial and political reforms under the criteria. Since 2005, the sides began formal discussions regarding Turkey's entry the EU.