Turkey Watch

Watching the Turkish nail being put into Europian coffin.

Friday, July 14, 2006

EU Turkey talks face new threat

From TheParliament.com

The European parliament sees the desecration of Greek Orthodox churches in Northern Cyprus as another ‘hurdle’ to Turkish EU entry.

On Wednesday MEPs adopted a written declaration condemning the pillaging of Greek Orthodox churches and monasteries in Turkish controlled northern Cyprus.

“This is just seen as another obstacle on the way to EU entry,” a parliamentary official told theparliament.com.

“The message from MEPs to Turkey is that they must stop doing this.”

In Wednesday’s resolution MEPs call on the European commission to raise their concerns during Ankara’s EU entry talks.

“This resolution asks for the issue to be raised during Turkish EU negotiations on education and culture,” Cypriot MEP Ioannis Kasoulides told this website.

“The commission should get assurances that Turkey will protect the culture of Northern Cyprus and restore those churches that have been destroyed.”

More than 133 churches, chapels and monasteries that are located in the northern part of Cyprus controlled by the Turkish army since 1974 have been desecrated.

78 churches have been converted into mosques, 28 are used as military depots and hospitals and 13 are used as stockyards.

More than 15,000 icons have been illegally removed and their location remains unknown.

“Turkey should be called upon to cooperate with Interpol to trace these stolen items,” Kasoulides added.

403 MEPs have signed the written declaration.

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