Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the Republic’s integration into the European Union interferes primarily a religious factor. The head of state said at a rally in Ankara Sunday, April 2, according to Hurriyet.
“Do you know why Turkey cannot join the EU for 54 years? The reason is quite clear: the EU is a Union of crusaders,” he said. According to him, the European leaders don’t listen to anyone so humble as the Pope, a meeting which was held on March 24.
“They lied to us 14 years in a row. And continue to do,” said Erdogan.
The President also noted that a referendum on amendments to the Turkish Constitution, which will be held April 16, “Dan shall be a response to the EU position”.
If in the plebiscite the people will vote for the proposed amendments, the President will be the Supreme commander, will have control over key posts in the armed forces, will be able to form a government and dissolve Parliament. The post of Prime Minister will be eliminated, the number of parliamentarians will increase.
In March, Erdogan said that he is considering to submit the question of Turkey’s accession to the EU on a similar referendum. He recalled that the parties signed an Association agreement in 1963, in 1987, the country has applied for membership in the Union, but the talks only began in 2005.