EU backs Turkish government, but warns against repression - Lithuanian formin

  • 2016-07-18
  • BNS/TBT Staff/Vilnius

EU foreign ministers expressed their support for the Turkish government after last week's unsuccessful military coup, but pushed for it to avoid repression, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius said on Monday.

"We have agreed on conclusions that are sending a dual message. On one hand, support for Turkey's constitutional government is reiterated and the coup attempt is condemned, but on the other hand, expectations and warnings (for the government) to respect human rights and freedoms and to ensure that there is no repression in the country are voiced," he told BNS by phone from Brussels where he is participating in a meeting of the EU's Foreign Affairs Council.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced following the coup attempt that the nation would consider reinstating the death penalty.

In Linkevicius’ opinion, the reinstatement of capital punishment would have a very negative effect on Turkey's EU membership negotiations.

"The death penalty is incompatible with the status of an EU member state," he explained.

The minister also voiced his concern over the detention of more than 2,000 judges in Turkey in the wake of last Friday's attempted coup.