Brussels, 11 December 2006 Press release

Plassnik: “Dry dock for several negotiation chapters”


Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik on the debate about Turkey in the EU Council

Brussels, 11 December 2006 – “We shall continue to consistently pursue the Austrian course in the negotiation process. This means caution, circumspection and steadfastness. There are no guarantees and no automatic results in this process, the outcome of which is open,” said Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik today during the preparations for the General Affairs and External Relations Council meeting.

“The motto now is: reduce speed and proceed on sight. I am in favour of a negotiation break in several important areas. Parts of the negotiating process will remain in the dry dock. It will be up to Turkey whether and when these negotiation chapters will get going again,” emphasised Plassnik.  “At any rate, we should conduct a political re-assessment after a reasonable period of time, say in 2008.”

“This is not about banging doors or burning bridges. But it is also evident that the EU must continue to pursue a clear course,” said the Foreign Minister, referring to the lack of progress on the part of Turkey with regard to the country’s full implementation of the Ankara Protocol, as demanded by the EU a year ago.

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