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Inicio arrow newsitems arrow CoE SG Jagland Wonders What Turkey may Seek by Threats to Reduce its Financial Contribution

CoE SG Jagland Wonders What Turkey may Seek by Threats to Reduce its Financial Contribution

Escrito por ACM
08.11.17
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*Strasbourg/CoE/Angelo Marcopolo/- PanEuropean, 47 Member States-strong CoE's Secretary General, Thornbjorn Jagland, former Norway's Prime Minister, speaking to Journalists in Strasbourg, including "Eurofora", during a Press-point, said that he did not yet know what was the Real Cause, and what Aim was, in fact, seeking Turkey, when it suddenly asked to Reduce its Financial Contribution to the Organisation of Strasbourg.

 

Curiously, indeed, Ankara's Government, after having asked itself, a few years ago, to be considered among the so-called "Great Payers" of the CoE, (so that there would be More Turkish MEPs in the Organisation's Assembly than in the Past, as it was, indeed, accepted by the CoE, meanwhile), all out of a Sudden, it Changed its mind, and wants Now to Pay Less Money...


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 - "I have received a Letter from (Turkish) Foreign Minister Cavusoglou, that Turkey would DisContinue being a Grand-Payer to the CoE", Jagland confimed officially.


- "We (CoE) have 6 Grand-Payers, together with the UK, France, Germany, Italy and the Russian Federation", he reminded.


 - "Now Turkey has conveyed to me that they want to get Back to the Normal Payer" status, (i.e. Pay Less to the CoE), and "we are going to have a Dialogue on this", on "How" and "When" to act. "Until it's done, I cant' say anything more" now.


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 - "All I can say is that the CoE, and particularly the ECHR, Needs all the Financial Support that it can get", especially "Because of the Many Applications coming also from Turkey and others" . "The Court has a need for such Funding", Jagland added, (indirectly, but surely, Pointing at Ankara's Authorities' Resposibilities, given the Fact that, for Years, the Biggest Number of Cases of Human Rights' Violations notoriously use to be Turkish)...


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    - "Do you think that it's a Sign that Turkey doesN't want to Respect its Commitments to the CoE" anymore ?, Jagland was asked.


    - "I have No Signs that the (above-mentioned) Letter is (such) a coup" attempt.... "It's up to the Turkish Government to Explain the contents of this Letter. It's not for me", he Carefully Replied, (apparently, however, Not Excluding Anything)...


     - Nevertheless, "I have received it, and, of course, I shall Try to Understand more of What it Means", CoE's Secretary General promised to Search to Find out.


     - "But", (at least for the Time being), "there is No Sign (yet) that Turkey has the Intention to Withdraw or Reduce its Commitments to the CoE", Jagland Negatively replied, as things stand until now.


    - "And, of course, this Decision will Not Influence at all the Judicial processes, that have already started, and may come in the Future. It will Not at all Influence Any of the Judicial Mechanisms that we (CoE) have on the Country", i.e., Turkey, CoE's Secretary General went on to add. (I.e. Warning Ankara that such Controversial Moves canNot be Exploited in order to eventually Diminish CoE's Monitoring of the situation of Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law nowadays in Turkey)...                                                                                                  
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    Immediately after having, Previously, Asked to become one among the 7 CoE's "Great Payers" (Comp. Supra), Turkey had also asked and got a Considerable Augmentation of the Number of Turkish MEPs inside CoE's PanEuropean Parliamentary Assembly (PACE), in Strasbourg.


    To the point that, for the 1st Time in its recent, Post Cold-War History, CoE's PanEuropean Assembly had, in fact, ended up by having a Lot of Turkish MEPs, while, by a Stange Coincidence, it had No More ...Any Russian MEP at all, since a PACE's Controversial but Influential Minority had, meanwhile, also taken a much-Disputed Decision to impose so Harsh "Sanctions" to Moscow, (f.ex. "Freezing" not only Voting, but Even Participation Rights in Top Bodies), that its MEPs were practically pushed to Refuse to Return Back to Strasbourg in such Conditions, unless their Rights were Better Respected.


    The Political Pretext for that Row, between PACE and Russia, was, obviously, the Ukranian Conflict, which has Divided the European Continent since 2014, (See, f.ex. : ... + ..., etc).


    It Resulted, recently, on 2017, by Moscow Goverment's anouncement that it was, at First, Suspending a big Part of its Annual Financial Contribution to the CoE, (2/3), until the elementary Rights of Russian MEPs would be Saveguarded. Moreover, Nowadays, Russia had just officialy anounced that it intends to definitively Cut all its Annual Financial Contribution to the CoE for 2018, for that Same Reason, (See, f.ex. : ...).


    So that Turkey's subsequent (and Different) announcement that it also Intends to Reduce its own  Annual Financial Contribution to the CoE, obviously came at a very Bad Moment for the PanEuropean Organisation.... Particularly when Ankara, Suddenly just Anounced that on ...November, which is, precisely, the Month, during which CoE uses to prepare and decide on its Budget for the Next Year (i.e., now, for 2018) !


     But, Contrary to Russia (Comp. Supra), Turkey's real Political Aim, which might Motivate or serve as a Pretext for such an UnPrecedented Move in Real Practice, is Not Yet officially known...


    What is known, however, is that the Turkish Governments use, too often, to practice various kinds of such "Blackmails" vis a vis not only Other Countries, but also various European or PanEuropean Organisations, (as the EU, CoE, etc), even NATO (f.ex. with an, UnPrecedented then, Institutional Blockade of NATO's 90th Anniversary Summit of 2009 in Strasbourg, see: ...), in order to Attempt to Obtain one or another Political Concession.


    And Ankara's Threat against CoE's Organisation for Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law, comes just After the EU Governments and MEPs reportedly decided to Cut 100 Million €, and "Freeze" 60 from Turkey's controversial and unpopular, so-called "Pre-Accession" Financial Aid for 2018, (i.e. practically Doubling the Amounts earlier Voted at EU Parliament in Strasbourg since October 2017), Because those Funds concerned mainly Democracy, Human Rights and Rule of Law issues, that the Turkish Authorities are, notoriously, trumpling underfeet, particularly nowadays...

 


(../..)
 



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("DraftNews", as already send to "Eurofora"'s Donors/Subscribers earlier. A more accurate, full Final Version, might be published asap.)

 
 


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 slovenian__croatian_presidents_at_coe_400

    The recent paradox of freezing EU Talks with front-runner Croatia, while continuing controversial EU - Turkey talks, despite Zagreb's acceptance of Refugees' Human Rights to return, that Ankara refuses fex. in Cyprus, while both have "Good Neighborhood" problems vis a vis Slovenia, or Greece, Cyprus and Armenia respectively, can it be justified by the non-fullfilment of EU criteria, as Slovenia says, or, is it "Double Standards" ?    

The question became unavoidable after statements by Presidents of Slovenia and Croatia, Tuerk and Mesic, respectively, to "EuroFora", exclusively or among Strasbourg's journalists this week at the CoE, on the sidelines of its 2009 Summer University for Political Schools, which topically brought them together as successive key-note speakers.


    Comming only a few Months before EU checks Turkey's compliance to its commitments on Cyprus, etc., scheduled for December 2009, this obviously has a special importance for the coherence of EU Enlargement's principles.

     Suspension of EU Negotiations is a normal consequence in case of a Candidate Country's failure to fullfil EU Conditions, such as "Good Neighborhood relations", stressed at first Slovenian President Danilo Tuerk, current CoE's chair.

    But, regarding EU's Criteria,  there shouldn't be any "Double Standards",  reacted Croatian President Stjepan Mesic, commenting the fact that Turkey's controversial EU negotiations continue, while they were recently "freezed" in the case of Croatia, an "unquestionably European Country", which oficially accepts to respect Refugees Human Rights, contrary to Ankara's notorious refusals or reluctance.                                       

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           - "EU itself has set as a Criterium (for EU Enlargement) the "Good Neighborhood relations",  and their absence justifies the "Suspension" EU Negotiations, (f.ex. with Croatia), because of a Border dispute affecting the territorial integrity of an EU Member Country, stressed Slovenian President, Danilo Tuerk, CoE's Chairman in office (May - November 2009), speaking to Journalists in Strasbourg including "EuroFora".    

Questioned earlier what "consequences on EU's Enlargement policy" can have the "Ban on EU Membership Negotiations", imposed to Croatia, Tuerk replied that "this question comes down to the fulfillement of (EU) Criteria for membership. One has to look at each Candidate Country ., from the point of view whether it fullfils the Criteria that EU has set. One of them are Good Neighborhood Relations, I'd like to remind. And also, there are other factors, such as Justice, Home affairs, Rule of Law, and others".


    - "Now, ..Candidate Countries are at Different Levels of fulfillement of Criteria", he observed.

    - " Croatia is obviously the closest to that. I'm rather optimistic : I think that in the coming Months we'll have an opportunity to look at all these issues constructively and hopefully we'll be able to make progress". "My main concern, at this point, is the situation in Bosnia : We haven't seen enough progres domesticaly. We haven't seen enough during ..political parties within their country.We need a New Energy, a new energetic move towards the Candidature for EU membership. "Other (Western Balkan) Countries (Serbia, Montenegro, FYROM, Albania) have been making soaring Progress, and I think that they should be ready, in a few Years, for the Candidate status".

    - "As far as the Western Balkans are concerned, .. nobody should be left outside" the EU, Slovenian's President concluded, ommitting to mention Turkey's controversial EU bid.

    - "This process may be seen as Slow, but..  Slovenia has also has also been exposed to various "Booms of Slowness" in our accession period. But now we can say that the process was relatively quick, because changes which occur after becoming EU member, are quite large, and they require proper Preparations before the (EU) membership becomes a new factor, an impacting line for a new (EU) member country".
----------------------------

EU "Solidarity" ?
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Slovenian statements made some participants from certain 3rd Countries as FYROM, etc. claim that "the Principle of EU Solidarity" would "produce a.. rising European Union Nationalism (sic !), against Non-EU Countries", as they said, asking unhappy foreign countries to form a "bloc" to exert pressure on the EU...    

But Croatian President Stjepan Mesic dismissed that, supporting "EU Integration", "after the Economy also in Political" issues, as "the achievement" of our times. In EU there is "diversity, but it's United", he stressed, "EU has to be United so that it can become a central factor of Peace" also at the surrounding areas, he replied.

croatian_president_mesic_ 

Speaking later exclusively to "EuroFora", the experienced twice President of Croatia, former President of the International "Non-Aligned" movement, denounced "Double Standards" in the way EU treats recently Croatia compared to Turkey :   

 - "I think that there shouldn't be Double Standards", stressed the Croatian President, in reply to a Question comparing the freeze of EU - Croatia talks, with the continuation of EU - Turkey talks, despite the fact that Croatia is an "unquestionably European country", while Turkey's EU bid is notoriously controversial.


    Mesic was reacting to the observation that, even if he confirmed his "respect of Refugees' Human Rights to return, etc. (See infra), nevertheless, EU talks are suspended with Croatia.. While for oher, controversial candidates, who refuse to respect Refugees' Rights to return, etc., as fex. Turkey does in occupied Cyprus and elsewhere, EU negotiations continue".

    - "I believe that Croatia's accession will confirm that all European Countries who fulfill all of the Conditions and achieve European Standards, have to join the EU. There shouldn't be any Double Standards", went on to add in reply President Mesic.

    In this relation, Croatia's President found "of paramount importance", CoE's "mechanisms enforcing ECHR's judgements"
    
    - "On Refugees and Displaced persons, the process will be completed only after the last person demanding to return will be allowed to do so !", President Mesic Croatia stressed earlier, setting a general standard of obvious importance also for otherr candidates, as f.ex. Turkey, often accused to exclude or heavily restrict Greek Cypriot Displaced persons' return to their Family Homes and ancestral land, provoke difficulties to Turkish-Kurd IDPs return to their home regions at the South-East, etc.

    Some "2.000 People are still reported Missing" in former Yugoslavia, for some Years, (as in Cyprus, modern Europe's oldest case, for 3 Decades. Nagorno-Karabach, Tcecnya in Russia, etc, more recently), and Investigations "will only be completed after establishing the fate of the last one of them", he added.
    
    Speaking earlier on "War Crimes", President Mesic stressed that "Leaders are responsible for (the) Wars (of the Past), not the People", and called against Impunity :  "Individuals have to be held Responsible for Crimes. International Penal Tribunals have to persecute those individuals", perpetrators of War Crimes, he underlined.

    Such statements naturally made Mesic rather popular at ECHR, whose President, French EuroJudge, Professor Jean-Paul Costa, looked particularly smiling when he welcomed him later on Wednesday afternoon, after Slovenian President Daniko Tuerk earlier this week.
           

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