BBC News: Turkey expects new talks on its EU bid next month
The EU will give fresh impetus next month to Turkey's bid to join the 28-nation bloc by opening talks on economic policy, Turkey's new Europe Minister Volkan Bozkir said, the BBC News reports.
Bozkir said the EU had agreed to open a new chapter in stalled negotiations, according to the BBC News.
Turkey's EU negotiations began in 2005, but so far only 13 chapters have been opened and only one – science and research – has been provisionally closed, the report says.
Chapter 17 of the EU acquis – the rules that would-be members have to sign up to – covers economic and monetary policy.
Bozkir tweeted that Chapter 17 would be opened at talks on December 14-15 in Brussels.
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President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's crackdown on political opponents has drawn much criticism in the EU.
Turkey's long-running dispute with EU member Cyprus, and the EU's concerns about human rights in Turkey have made progress in the talks extremely slow.
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The whole idea of Turkey joining the EU is very controversial. Many European politicians, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, are unenthusiastic.
Such a large, mainly Muslim country with many rural poor could change the whole character of the EU, critics argue.