Turkey will “never give up” its goal of EU membership, the country’s Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said.
“Turkey is the most long-suffering country in the world for the EU accession as we have not got full membership for over 60 years,” Bozdag said during a meeting of the Union of European Turkish Democrats in Vienna on Saturday.
“Can you imagine? We are knocking the EU’s door for 60 years despite no answer, but we will never give up applying to the EU.”
Turkey started EU membership negotiations in 2005 but has aspired to join the bloc since shortly after it was founded as the European Economic Community in 1957…
Related: Italy will throw the full weight of the EU presidency behind Turkey’s accession bid as it takes over the office, Italian under-secretary for Europe Sandro Gozi has told the Anadolu Agency.
Gozi said Turkey’s accession to the EU would contribute to the 28-member bloc economically, socially and culturally.
He said: “We have always welcomed and supported Turkey’s EU membership. We always want Turkey to be included in the EU more and this will be among Italy’s priorities.”
Stating that Turkey should make good use of Italy’s presidency period, Gozi said: “Italy is determined to accelerate Turkey’s EU membership process, hence we will do our best to support Turkey’s EU bid…”