France pushes sanctions on Turkey as Macron bends the knife amid tensions with the EU | World | New


The French president has also signaled his willingness to work with the new administration Joe Biden to impose restrictions in response to the NATO ally’s decision to purchase Russian S-400 air defense systems last year. Tensions erupted in August when Ankara sent a seismic exploration vessel, the Oruc Reis, to the exclusive economic zone of Cyprus and also to waters claimed by Greece.

The EU, led by Germany, tried to negotiate a settlement, but without success.
Thursday’s EU summit ordered Josep Borrell, who as high representative is the bloc’s foreign policy leader, to report to the next summit in March “on the state of play EU-Turkey political, economic and trade relations and on instruments and options on how to proceed, including on the extension and scope of “sanctions.

Such measures would allow the EU to target companies and vessels involved in drilling activities which Greece and Cyprus claim are undertaken in their waters.

The EU has reportedly hardened its position in response to Mr Macron’s demands.

In the meantime, the bloc has approved a summit statement that paves the way for the punishment of those accused of planning or participating in what the bloc says is unauthorized drilling off Cyprus.

The measures did not go far enough for Greece, with envoys saying the country had expressed frustration that the EU was reluctant to target the Turkish economy on the oil dispute, while Germany, Italy and Spain were pushing for more time for diplomacy.

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He said: “We also talked about how issues relating to arms exports should be discussed within NATO.

“We said we wanted to coordinate with the new US administration on Turkey. ”

Speaking after the summit, Erdogan said the “reasonable countries” of the EU had thwarted efforts against Turkey.

He added: “Our rights must be granted. There are now many rights that EU member states must grant Turkey.

“Reasonable countries in the EU have thwarted this game by showing a positive stance. ”

Referring to the US measures, which would be imposed through the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA), he said: “For America to stand up and confront Turkey with a case like CAATSA is disrespectful to a very important to NATO.

“After the American transfer of power, we will undoubtedly see the trend much more clearly. It is therefore up to us to be patient and to see. ”

Mr Macron and Mr Erdogan disagreed recently, with Mr Erdogan saying he hoped France would “get rid of Mr Macron soon”.

The French president responded by suggesting that Turkey was an “authoritarian” nation.


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