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    EU breaks its silence on Turkey's Ergenekon

    HotNewsTurkey Staff
    29.10.2008 - 12:19 | Son Güncelleme: 29.10.2008 - 12:18

    The European Union criticizes Turkey's controversial Ergenekon investigation in its most important annual document on Turkey, the Turkish Daily News (TDN) reported on Wednesday.

    The European Union, subjected to criticism for its unusual reserve on the rights of defendants in the case of the ongoing Ergenekon investigation as well as the so-called Deniz Feneri corruption investigation that have both rattled the Turkish political agenda for months, will break its silence in its annual progress report on Turkey to be published next week.

    Complaints regarding the insufficient safeguard of the rights of the scores accused in the Ergenekon case, some kept in detention for months without formal charges or indictment, are covered in the draft report, which offers a snapshot analysis of EU-Turkey relations over the past year. 

    The fraud case against the deniz Feneri e.V. charity association in Germany, and its possible connections to Turkey's Prime Ministry as alleged by German investigators, are also emphasized under the title "Anti-corruption Policy" in the report, wherein the government was criticized for failing to prepare a comprehensive strategy.

    "Corruption remains a widespread issue," the 85-page draft report says. The politicization of senior level appointments in public administration is also criticized.

    In another document obtained on Tuesday by the TDN entitled "Enlargement strategy and main challenges 2008," which provides an overall assessment of the enlargement policy of the EU as well as expectations from eight candidates and potential candidate countries including Turkey, Brussels expressed relief over the Constitutional Court's decision not to dissolve the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

    "This averted a major political crisis," said the companion document to the pending progress report, seen by TDN. The EU refrained from harsh criticism of the case and the Constitutional Court, instead urging Turkey to amend legal provisions on the closure of political parties in line with European standards.

    The lack of dialogue and a spirit of compromise between the main political parties, and the resultant negative impact on the functioning of political institutions and the process of political reforms, were expressed as sources of concern for future EU reforms in the country.

    Meanwhile the disappointment over the lack of a draft or timetable for a new constitution was implied, stating that, "Instead Parliament amended Article 10 and 42 of the Constitution with the aim of lifting the headscarf ban for university students."

     

     

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