Gul asks EU to open all chapters at once
Turkish President Abdullah Gul who is currently in Sweden on a formal trip addressed Swedish Parliament earlier on Wednesday and replied the questions of MPs at the parliament and Turkish reporters afterwards.
Replying the questions of MPs, Gul said, "As you said earlier, there are rooted reforms are taking place in Turkey. We always keep rising the standards of Turkey's human rights, democracy and legal system as our own people, Turkish people, our citizens deserve these."
A MP from a moderate party, Hans Valmark reminded that they were expecting Turkey's full EU membership and asked Gul about what could Sweden do in the scope of Turkey's EU accession process. Gul expressed that EU accesssion was strategical direction that Turkey had already chosen.
Gul pointed out the deep historical links between Turkey and Sweden and added, "...to write the history of Europe without Turkish and Turkey will be inadequate. In this framework, Turkey is determined to keep strong relations and continue its EU membership process."
In the field of energy, Gul said Turkey would be providing a major contribution to the EU and continued as saying, "Caucasus, Middle East, Central Asia. All energy sources will head to EU over Turkey and the energy dependency of Europe is obvious. We are a source to ensure that via different ways. However, we cannot even open the energy chapter. It is impossible to find a logical explanation to that. In this respect, we need to regenerate this negotiation process. France opens a chapter but I do not think that the opening of one chapter will have an effect on the negotiation process. If we want a serious effect, then all frozen chapters need to be opened."
Ocalan's jail terms
Furthermore, MP of the Green Party, Walter Mut asked Gul about the resolution process and what their point of view was about "the release of PKK terror organization Ocalan in the future", and Gul said, "Whatever the reason, we are against terror. In order to have civil rights using arms and violence is not acceptable around the world today, especially towards civilians. There needs to be an attitude given if they are applying terror in city centres."
Gul touched on the works being held on Turkey's constitution and said, "I believe, this constitution will be much harmonic with the criteria of EU. It will help Turkey to take these kind of problems out of the agenda. Ocalan was sentenced through due processes. He does not have any health problems nor isolated from the community. He has access to newspapers and TV."
Gul's comment on Sweden
Moreover, Gul also assessed his state visit to Sweden to Turkish journalists who were following him in Sweden.
He stressed that both talks with the royalty and the government went very positive and beneficial, added, steps were taken in the scope of improving Turkish-Swedish relations.
Turkey's president said, they discussed many subjects, both bilateral and multilateral topics with Sweden's Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt.
Gul told journalists that Swedish businessmen asked detailed questions to him during their meetings and continued, "They do not have a general interest. They are careful and engaged economically in Turkey's issues."
Gul also said that they covered the terrorism issues mainly during his visit to the parliament and said, "There is the parliaments decision about us which was taken once upon a time. As you know it, it was 30 to 31, just with one vote difference. I talked about how upsetting that decision was. I talked about how wrong decisions can go. But, in the end all went very friendly."
Lastly, upon a question, Gul shared with Turkish journalists that he talked with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan about pm's health condition.
"We did communicate. There is a common influenza pandemic around. His health is all okay. When you work weekdays and weekends, unfortunately, these do happen. Hoping that he will recover in a few days time," said Turkey's president.
Wednesday, March 13, 2013