Davutoglu: "The impasse in Turkey's EU bid isn't technical, but political"
Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu continued to criticize Brussels after Tuesday's meeting of the EU-Turkey Association Council in Brussels. Davutoglu told a joint press conference with Romanian Foreign Minister Teodor Baconschi that Turkey's EU bid is at risk of grinding to a halt amid rows with Cyprus and strong objections to its membership by Germany and France. "Despite all efforts, the negotiation process [with the EU] is at an impasse," he said. "The problem isn't the technical process, but the political roadblocks." Davutoglu also criticized the bloc for failing to authorize negotiations over visa-free travel for Turkish citizens, despite Turkey's progress in meeting the EU's conditions for starting such talks. Also speaking at the joint press conference, Baconschi expressed Romania's support for Turkey's EU bid. "Turkey joining the EU will bolster its position, increasing its importance as a global actor," he said. After meeting later with Latvian Foreign Minister Girts Valdis, Davutoglu thanked Latvia for supporting Turkey's EU bid, adding that the two countries are working to ease bilateral visa requirements.