The Minister for EU Affairs of Turkey Omer Chelik joined the assessment of the Russia - Turkey and Ankara-Brussels relations issue according to the news agency Habertürk.
The Turkish politician believes that rapprochement of Turkey and Russia does not mean the decaying of relations between Ankara and Brussels.
Celik says that one of the major issues of the meeting held between Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan was the civil war in Syria. But, of course, the Presidents have also discussed the cooperation in other areas such as economy, culture and tourism.
Moreover, Omer Celik commented on estimates and statements by other politicians and experts who believe that rapprochement of the Turkish Republic with Russia alienate Turkey and Europe.
“Our relationship with someone else is not an alternative to any other relationships. They complement each other. Rapprochement of Turkey and Russia does not mean the decaying of relations with the EU.”
The Republic of Turkey is one of the founding members of the Council of Europe, as well as the "associate" member of the EU since 1963. Officially the Republic became a candidate for membership in the European Union in 1987, but negotiations on the full accession of Turkey to the organization began only in 2005.
In 2016, Ankara and Brussels signed the new Agreement, which is the next stage in the negotiations on Turkey's membership in the European Union. The decision to introduce visa-free regime for Turkey is a part of this Agreement, according to which Turkey has agreed to take back the migrants who illegally left its territory for Greece. The significant flow of refugees who fled from Syria because of the civil war resulted in a political crisis in a number of European Union countries.