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Senior EU official prioritizes judicial reform for Turkey

23 February 2010 [17:42] - TODAY.AZ
The European commissioner for enlargement prioritized judicial reform for Turkey's democratization.
Commissioner Stefan Fule asked Turkey to progress its democratization initiatives, and enumerated priorities as the judicial reform, civilian control on the army, and constitutional reform.

Speaking in a meeting of the Turkey-European Union (EU) Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC), Fule said Turkey had recently made many significant reforms, and listed some of them annulment of a security and public order protocol, publicly known as EMASYA; preparation of a bill on establishment of an independent human rights agency; and adoption of a strategy to strengthen fight against corruption.

Fule said the EU would continue to support Turkish government's democratic initiative aiming to raise democratic right and living standards of all Turkish citizens.

The commissioner said he was hopeful about civilian-military relations in Turkey, and asked Turkey to lift all legal obstacles before freedom of press.

Fule welcomed negotiations between Turkey and the EU on a re-admission agreement.

After the agreement was signed, the European Commission might recommend member countries to simplify visa procedures for some vocational groups, Fule said.

Fule also said travelling to Europe without a visa could be discussed at a later date.

The EU-Turkey JPC is composed of an equal number of Members of the European Parliament and of the Turkish Grand National Assembly. It meets in general twice a year, alternately in Turkey or in one of the work places of the European Parliament.

Since the opening of accession negotiations with Turkey, based on the European Council decision of December 2004, the JPC holds discussions on the relations between the EU and Turkey, scrutinizes the application of the Customs Union and follows in particular the progress of the accession negotiations.

/World Bulletin/

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