Erdogan suggests that Turkey has the potential to separate from the European Union.

On Saturday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed the possibility of Ankara “separating” from the European Union, indicating that Turkey is considering terminating its bid for EU membership.

He informed reporters in Istanbul that the European Union is attempting to distance itself from Turkey. He will be heading to New York to participate in the 78th UN General Assembly.

When questioned about the European Parliament report on Turkey, Erdogan stated that his team will assess the developments and potentially consider ending their association with the European Union if deemed necessary.

Erdogan’s statement on Saturday came more than a week after Turkey’s foreign minister affirmed his country’s resolve to join the EU and urged the bloc to take courageous steps to advance its bid.

Erdogan is sworn in for another term as president of Turkey.

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What was the subject of the European Parliament report?

The report, adopted earlier this week, said Turkey’s accession process with the EU cannot resume under current circumstances. It also called for the European Union to explore “a parallel and realistic framework” for its ties with Ankara.

The European Parliament report was criticized by Turkey’s Foreign Ministry for being “unfounded” and “based on disinformation.” The ministry further stated that the report included baseless accusations and biases, and displayed a limited and short-sighted perspective on Turkey’s relationship with the EU.

The negotiations for Turkey’s membership in the EU have been in progress since 2005, but they are currently at a standstill due to the EU’s worries about the declining state of law and human rights in Turkey.

After being reelected in May, Erdogan urged for the resumption of talks to join the EU. In July, he proposed that the EU should accept Turkey into the group if it desired Sweden’s membership in NATO.

dh/sms (dpa, Reuters)