A report released by the European Commission says Turkey is abiding by a March 2016 agreement with the EU and condemns the July 15, 2016 coup attempt in the country.

European Union (R) and Turkish flags fly at the business and financial district of Levent in Istanbul, Turkey on September 4, 2017.
European Union (R) and Turkish flags fly at the business and financial district of Levent in Istanbul, Turkey on September 4, 2017. (Reuters)

Turkey has made “good progress” on handling migration and asylum and remains “committed” to its deal with the EU to stop irregular migrants from travelling to Europe via its territory, a report released by the European Commission on Tuesday said.

“Turkey made good progress in the area of migration and asylum policy and remained committed to the implementation of the March 2016 EU-Turkey Statement effective management of migratory flows along the Eastern Mediterranean route,” the report read.

The report added that the Commission is “assessing” Turkey's proposals on a work plan outlining how the country plans to fulfil the seven outstanding benchmarks to secure a visa liberalisation deal with the EU. 

On Turkey’s economic situation, the report noted that Turkey has made “some progress” and has “a good level of preparation to cope with competitive pressures and market forces within the EU.” 

“Turkey is well-integrated with the EU market in terms of both trade and investment. Some progress was made in the energy sector, particularly in the gas market, and in increasing R&D spending,” the reported added.

The European Commission also condemned a coup attempt on July 15, 2016 aimed at ousting the democratically elected government of Turkey.

“The EU, which immediately and strongly condemned the attempted coup, reiterated its full support for the country's democratic institutions, and recognised Turkey's legitimate need to take swift and proportionate action in the face of such a serious threat,” the report said.

Turkey accuses FETO, or Fetullah Terrorist Organisation. a network led by US-based preacher Fetullah Gulen, of being behind the a failed coup attempt.

The network is also accused of infiltrating Turkey’s state institutions – including the military, police and judiciary – in a bid to undermine the Turkish government. 

Following the failed putsch, many suspected coup plotters with links to the network fled Turkey to European countries to escape arrest. 

Despite requests, EU countries harbouring FETO affiliates have failed to extradite them to Turkey to face trial for their alleged crimes. 

Turkey has been in a state of emergency since the coup attempt, and on Tuesday the National Security Council recommended extending emergency rule for the seventh time.

The European Commission, however, called on Turkey to lift the state of emergency, blaming it for a lack of progress in the country's accession talks to join the bloc.

“Turkey should lift the state of emergency without delay,” the Commission recommended.

Turkey began EU membership talks in 2005, but they have remained at a standstill in recent years.

Source: TRT World