Sunday, November 19, 2017

EU Cuts Turkey Funding after 'Democratic Deterioration'

EU Cuts Turkey Funding
The European Union will cut funds allocated to Turkey due to the "deteriorating situation in relation to democracy, rule of law and human rights" there, according to a European Parliament (EP) statement.

The bloc will shrink the so-called "pre-ascension funds" for Turkey by 105m euros ($124m) and suspend an additional 70m euros in the 2018 budget, the statement said on Saturday, Al Jazeera reported.

Ankara is entitled to receive 4.45 billion euros from the EU between 2014 and 2020 in the framework of the bloc's "Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance".

The Council of the EU and the EP, the two legislative institutions of the bloc, still need to formally approve the new budget.

"Concerning Turkey, MEPs made sure to cut pre-accession funds by 105 million euros (with a further €70 million in commitments put in reserve), as they consider the deteriorating situation in relation to democracy, rule of law and human rights worrying," the statement by the EP said, referring to its members as MEPs.

Many of the EU member states have been in condemnation of the Turkish government's arrests and purges of tens of thousands of people after a failed coup attempt in July 2016.

Local and international rights groups have accused the government of using the coup attempt as a pretext to silence opposition in the country.

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