EU membership talks with Turkey begin

  • 2005-10-05
  • By Ahto Lobjakas, RFE/RL
After 30 hours of intense negotiations, European Union foreign ministers agreed on Oct. 3 to open membership talks with Turkey, bringing to an end a 43-year wait for Ankara. The ministers overcame strong skepticism on the part of Austria and Cyprus and also reached accord with Ankara, which needed to fully vet the EU offer before dispatching Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul to Luxembourg to formally open the talks.The EU decision gives Turkey - an overwhelmingly Muslim country of 70 million people - a realistic chance to one day join the bloc. British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw handled the o...
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