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Hague reaffirms support for Turkey’s EU bid May 18, 2010

Posted by Yilan in EU, European Union, Turkey.
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The UK’s newly appointed foreign secretary, William Hague, has said the UK will continue to strongly support Turkey’s bid to join the European Union.

Hague wrote an article for Europe’s World, a tri-annual Europe-wide policy journal, to be published in June, in which he discussed how the new British government saw its EU policy. “The case for Turkey’s accession to the EU is as strong as ever,” he stated, adding that its membership would bring certain benefits to the 27-member bloc.“As well as offering considerable mutual economic benefits and profoundly strengthening the EU’s security of energy supply, Turkey’s membership would refute those who claim that there is a clash of civilizations between the West and Islam, and would make Turkey an ideal interlocutor between Europe and the Middle East,” he wrote for the summer issue of the journal, to which various European politicians, including heads of state, have contributed in the past. The UK has always been famous for its EU-skepticism, which was feared to intensify as the Conservatives formed the coalition government after the last general elections earlier this month. However, Hague also wrote in the same article that “the EU is an institution of enormous importance to the UK and to British foreign policy.”

He, however, also voiced some criticism, particularly with regards to the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, in which, he wrote, the British voters were denied any say. “That denial has done grave damage in Britain to the EU’s democratic legitimacy, and that legitimacy is now profoundly in need of repair,” he added, also saying that their intention, through a set of measures, was not to “frustrate or sabotage” the operation of the EU but “to put Britain’s role in the EU on a more positive footing.”

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