Sunday

30th Apr 2017

Turkey threatens retaliation against Austria

  • Turkey hosts some 3 million refugees (Photo: European Parliament)

Tensions continue to flare between Ankara and Vienna following Austria's bid, earlier this week, to formally block Turkey’s EU membership talks.

Turkey's foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told Austrian TV radio station O1 on Thursday (15 December) that Turkey would "take action against Austria at all levels and on all issues" in retaliation.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

The minister, who previously described Austria as the capital of racism, did not elaborate on the nature of the action.

Criticism was also hurled by Turkey's minister for EU affairs, Omer Celik, who accused Austria of "sabotaging the EU project".

“There is no difference between the rhetoric of the Austrian foreign minister and the rhetoric of any racist party," Celik was quoted as saying on Thursday by Turkish state news agency Anadolu.

Austria's foreign minister, Sebastian Kurz in Brussels on Tuesday,demanded a freeze in Turkey’s EU talks due to its purge of alleged sympathisers with a failed coup in July and with Kurdish separatists.

Turkey has jailed 36,000 people, including opposition MPs, and shut down leading media for their alleged links.

Kurz said it “was wrong to continue accession negotiations as if nothing negative has happened in Turkey in the last few months."

The other EU states rejected Austria’s proposal.

They opted to maintain full relations with Turkey for strategic reasons and to issue verbal warnings on its post-coup crackdown instead.

EU leaders, at a summit in Brussels on Thursday, also said they remained committed to an EU-Turkey deal on migration.

The called for “full and non-discriminatory implementation of all aspects" of the deal, under which Turkey stops migrants from going to Greece in return closer EU relations.

Ties between Austria and Turkey have been fraying for the past few months.

In November, Austria's defence minister, Hans Peter Doskozil, said the EU needed contingency plans in case the migrant deal unravelled.

Other EU personalities and the European Parliament has also heaped rebuked on Turkey.

Luxembourg's foreign minister Jean Asselborn compared Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s "methods, one must say this bluntly, [to those] that were used during Nazi rule [in Germany]”.

The migrant deal, signed off in March, has since been used as leverage by Turkey in its efforts to gain visa-free travel to the EU.

Verbal tit-for-tats have become almost a weekly occurrence, with Erdogan threatening to scrap the deal if Turks are not granted the visa waiver, and with the EU saying it must amend its terrorism laws first.

"If we do not get the expected outcome regarding the visa issue ... if promises are not fulfilled, Turkey will no doubt have a plan B and it will have a plan C," Erdogan said on Thursday in Ankara.

Erdogan's Nazi jibes sour EU relations

Turkish leader Erdogan has accused Germany of Nazi-type behaviour after German towns banned Turkish rallies, in a widening EU backlash that also includes Austria and the Netherlands.

Mob storms Macedonian parliament

A nationalist mob violently stormed parliament in Macedonia on Thursday, amid EU concern on police conduct during the attack.

Dont expect 'quick fix' in Syria, China tells EU

Beijing special envoy on the Syrian conflict said in Brussels that "imposing" a solution from the outside would "not be workable" and that the peace process will not be "smooth sailing".

Mob storms Macedonian parliament

A nationalist mob violently stormed parliament in Macedonia on Thursday, amid EU concern on police conduct during the attack.

News in Brief

  1. Vote of no confidence prepared against Spanish PM
  2. Syria to buy Russian anti-missile system
  3. Germany seeks partial burka ban
  4. Libya has no plan to stop migration flows
  5. EU has no evidence of NGO-smuggler collusion in Libya
  6. Poland gets 'final warning' on logging in ancient forest
  7. Commission gives Italy final warning on air pollution
  8. Romania and Slovenia taken to court over environment policies

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceCharlotte Hornets' Nicolas Batum Tells Kids to "Eat Well, Drink Well, Move!"
  2. ECR GroupSyed Kamall: We Need a New, More Honest Relationship With Turkey
  3. Counter BalanceParliament Sends Strong Signal to the EIB: Time to Act on Climate Change
  4. ACCARisks and Opportunities of Blockchain and Shared Ledgers Technologies in Financial Services
  5. UNICEFRace Against Time to Save Millions of Lives in Yemen
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersDeveloping Independent Russian-Language Media in the Baltic Countries
  7. Swedish EnterprisesReform of the European Electricity Market: Lessons from the Nordics, Brussels 2 May
  8. Malta EU 2017Green Light Given for New EU Regulation to Bolster External Border Checks
  9. Counter BalanceCall for EU Commission to Withdraw Support of Trans-Adriatic Pipeline
  10. ACCAEconomic Confidence at Highest Since 2015
  11. European Federation of Allergy and Airways60%-90% of Your Life Is Spent Indoors. How Does Poor Indoor Air Quality Affect You?
  12. European Gaming and Betting AssociationCJEU Confirms Obligation for a Transparent Licensing Process

Latest News

  1. EU boasts unity on Brexit talks
  2. May’s election juggernaut
  3. EPP scolds Orban over university and NGO laws
  4. Oxford-Studie besorgt über 'Schrott' News in Frankreich
  5. Alte Freundschaft zwischen Le Pen und Putin
  6. EP chief faces questions after homophobic 'summit'
  7. EU signals Northern Ireland could join if united with Ireland
  8. One year later: EU right to open internet still virtual