Europe News

Germany wants Europe to suspend prep work for EU-Turkey Customs Union

BERLIN (Reuters) - The German government wants the European Commission to suspend preparatory work on negotiations with Turkey about modernizing the EU-Turkey Customs Union because it would send the “wrong signal”, a draft paper obtained by Reuters showed.

The paper also mentioned a number of other measures it would like to see implemented at the European level to raise financial pressure on Turkey to respect the rule of law.

It said that given developments in Turkey pre-accession aid (IPA) should be targeted “even more towards supporting democracy and the rule of law”. It also said the European Commission should look into suspending all pre-accession aid to Turkey if the need arises.

It added that Germany expected the Commission to “shift funding away from Turkey in a way that is meaningful compared to the overall funding Turkey receives under the IPA schemes.”

Reporting by Gernot Heller; Writing by Erik Kirschbaum; Editing by Joseph Nasr