¿Qué hay de malo con Turquía?

El 16 de diciembre Orhan Pamuk, uno de los escritores más famosos de Turquía, se presentará ante un tribunal de Estambul para enfrentar la acusación de “insultar la identidad nacional” tras haberse mostrado partidario de un debate abierto sobre el genocidio turco de 1,5 millones de armenios en 1915 y 1916. Pamuk puede enfrentar una sentencia de tres años en prisión. La actitud de Turquía de multar y enviar a la cárcel a quienes no siguen la línea oficial confirma mi oposición a abrir negociaciones sobre su ingreso como miembro a la Unión Europea.

En diciembre de 1999, el Consejo Europeo dio a Turquía el estatus de miembro-candidato a la UE, implicando que accedería a la Unión en una fecha futura y no especificada. Posteriormente, el Consejo pidió a la Comisión Europea que decidiera para octubre de 2004 si Turquía había satisfecho de manera suficiente los criterios políticos -incluidos la democracia, el imperio de la ley y el respeto de los derechos de las minorías éticas- para su membresía. Esa decisión fue una de las últimas de la Comisión de Romano Prodi, de la cual fui miembro. De sus 30 miembros, 29 dijeron que Turquía había satisfecho los criterios lo suficientemente como para avanzar en el proceso. Fui el único en disentir.

El propio informe de la Comisión sobre Turquía, preparado por Günter Verheugen, que en ese entonces estaba a cargo de la ampliación de la UE, plasmó mi decisión. El documento mencionaba que en 2003 cerca de 21.870 presentaron solicitudes de asilo a la UE, de las cuales 2.127 fueron aceptadas. En otras palabras, los propios gobiernos de la UE reconocieron en 2003 que el gobierno turco había perseguido a más de 2.000 de sus ciudadanos.

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