Germany's Merkel: move forward Turkish EU talks

AP News
Posted: Feb 04, 2014 9:10 AM
Germany's Merkel: move forward Turkish EU talks

BERLIN (AP) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she supports moving forward talks on Turkey's membership of the European Union, though she remains skeptical about whether it should join and won't put a time limit on the process.

Turkey's talks on joining the 28-nation bloc began in 2005 but are barely moving — mainly due to Turkey's dispute with EU member Cyprus and unease about admitting a populous, largely Muslim country.

Merkel said after meeting Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday that she supports opening those sections of Turkey's membership negotiations that address justice and human rights "as soon as possible."

She also prodded Turkey over judicial independence, which has been called into question by Ankara's handling of a recent corruption scandal.