Turkey’s Erdoğan rejects EU partnership proposals, says Turkey wants full membership

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has rejected proposals of a partnership with the European Union and said full membership to the bloc is the only option for Turkey.

Turkey has an “important” role stemming the flow of migrants to Europe and provides “security and stability” to the continent, AFP quoted Erdoğan as saying.

The EU is blocking access to negotiations and suggests that lack of progress is because of us. It’s unfair... We want full membership. Other options are not satisfactory.

On Erdoğan’s January visit to Paris, French President Emmanuel Macron said it was “hypocrisy” to say progress could be made on Turkish EU membership, promoting the idea of a partnership instead, as other political leaders in the bloc had raised before.

Turkish ambitions to join the EU date back over half a century but accession talks started in October 2005, during Erdoğan’s first term in the government.

A total of 35 chapters needed to be completed to join the EU as a full member. Turkey and EU have so far opened 16 chapters on various reforms but competed only one. No new chapter has been opened since June 2016.