Turkey has applied several times for membership in the European Union (EU), but unlike Greece, it never seems to enter in the European Union club. In fact, it is quite interesting that despite more than 28 years, had been passed it first applied for inclusion is signifying the country’s never-ending quest for EU. But the “country’s entry to EU is still blocked by human rights concerns – and subtle prejudices” which have presented Turkey’s unprecedented fractured image before the EU.
Although, it is imperative to understand that, why EU is reluctant to accept Turkey’s application to the union. Because it is characterized by the manifold of political, geographical, religious and cultural distinctions between Turkey and EU. Ultimately, however, the past historical discontents of the Ottoman Empire with Europe had also escalated tensions for Turkey’s admission. Which have enlarged a gulf between Turkey and EU, and more specifically it has absolutely impeded Turkey’s admission to EU parliament and its politics.
The current state of Turkey is the successor to the Ottoman Empire. An Empire which was disintegrated in the aftermath, of the World War I, was traditionally hostile towards Europe and its population. As for as, the Ottoman Empire is concerned, some of its areas were in Europe which then seized and distributed among the victorious nations of the world war I.
The spiritual successor to the Empire’s only 3% of a territory lies in Europe such as Istanbul and East Thrace. In fact, it is the only country which capital is not in Europe has applied for EU. Moreover, the population of Turkey is predominantly Muslims, while Europe is overwhelmingly dominated by Christian population.
Consequently, the massive Turkish population is a blocking point for its membership in the EU. Turkey’s population is overwhelmingly – crossed to 80 million. If it joins EU today, it would be considered the second largest country after Germany. She would almost dominate all the traditionally, core countries of the European Union. Such as, Britain, France, and Italy. Eventually, it will obviously dominate Germany within a short period because seats are distributed on the basis of population to the member states in the EU parliament. Therefore, Turkey could be an influential country, in the EU politics. Indeed, the instant shift of power would almost be inevitable, in the EU after the admission of Turkey. It will not only bring an instant shift in power corridor but also alter the political and demographic map of the European Union parliament.
Turkey would immediately, become a key player in the political arena of EU. It would certainly be – consider an influential country – than the traditionally, core countries in the European Union politics. Perhaps,the majority of the EU parliament members would be from Turkey if it joins today. Because “Turkey is too big for the EU to absorb. With a population predicted to reach 91 million by 2050, it will be the dominant member of the EU.” Hence, the massive Turkish population is the blocking – point and drastic – obstacle for Turkey’s entry in the EU.
Furthermore, the unresolved problem of Northern Cyprus is another insurmountable hurdle for Turkey’s membership in the EU. I would bring into account the historical discords between Turkey and Greek over the illegitimate occupation of Northern Cyprus. When the Greek military “backed a coup d’état in Cyprus” in 1974. Soon after Turkey decided to interject into the matter with the stated intention of protecting the ethnic Turk population in the Northern part of Cyprus.
In 1983, with the help of Turkey, Northern part declared itself as an independent Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Which was merely acknowledged by Turkey; and particularly – none other than Turkey has accepted it as a sovereign state of Northern Cyprus. Therefore, the Cypriots have rejected the idea of reunification with the Turkish part of Northern Cyprus. The issue over Northern Cyprus made relatively a huge problem for Turkey’s membership in the EU.
At this time, EU has borders with Europe only if Turkey joins EU it will be having indirectly borders with Middle Eastern countries. Such as, Syria and Iran. People are moving freely without travel passport and bills throughout EU member states. If Turkey is accepted as a member would create scrapes. The then IS fighters will easily enter Europe. As the Middle East is overwhelmingly dominated by wars and demonstration. Lots of people have been killed, tortured and migrated to other countries. If Turkey joins the EU, the war will immediately influence the European countries – and make lots of troubles to seek its end.
It is obvious that recently the rise of the Islamic State (IS) has explicitly alter the politics of Middle East particularly Syria and Iraq. For instance, the war has largely engulfed the Middle East since many decades. Hence, EU is radical in its intents to accept Turkey’s membership. Because it fears the menace of terrorism to arrive in the form of IS the new brand of extreme violent and ultra-radical movement of the 21st century. Which have terrorized the whole world.
It is a big hurdle and very shocking that IS has marked Turkey and Europe as its target in the wake of 2015 bombing in Ankara and Paris. Thus, “the attacks in Paris on the night of Friday 13 November by gunmen and suicide bombers hit a concert hall, a major stadium, restaurants, and bars, almost simultaneously – and left 130 people dead and hundreds wounded.” Moreover, Ankara bomb blast have claimed more than 107 lives, which was carried out by the IS terrorists. Which have almost made EU more sensitive about Turkey’s inclusion to EU, because terrorists look its way forward to deteriorate the peace of Europe.
Following the Car bomb hits Turkey’s Ankara two times in a single week which claimed more than 70 innocent civilians and more wounded. So it seems that the recent waves of terrorist violence in Turkey would make EU more conscious to block Turkey’s membership in the EU. Because EU will never take a risk that might push it to the intense and unprecedented waves of violence, anarchy, and bloodshed. However, not only religious, political, cultural, historical, and geographical issues but also the security issues could have prohibited Turkey to join EU.
Najeeb Kakar is a freelance writer and researcher interested in Politics, society, history and terrorism. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org Follow him on Twitter@najeebkakar19 and Facebook.
The Afghan Tribune | Najeeb Kakar | Published: March 24, 2016, 01:17 PM