17.03.2006 Zdanoka: Turkey must meet conditions for EU membership
Welcoming this week's vote at the European Parliament to support the European Commission's strategy for future enlargement of the European Union, Latvian MEP and Human Rights campaigner Tatjana Zdanoka said the vote clearly emphasised continued enthusiasm for further enlargement but urged the Commission to strictly enforce conditions relating to respect for human rights and democracy in countries wishing to join the EU.
Ms Zdanoka urged the Commission to learn from the experience of her own country,
Tatjana Zdanoka's party (For Human Rights in a United Latvia) represents the substantial Russian speaking minority in the country.
Speaking during the debate in Parliament, Ms Zdanoka said:
"I very much appreciate the references to the necessity of enjoyment fundamental rights and freedoms, notably the rights of minorities, in
When debating Turkey's application to join the Union I have urged the Commission not to repeat the mistakes that were made in the case of my country, Latvia's, accession by not using the process to promote the rights of minorities.
The EFA group in the European Parliament has called on the EU institutions to urge the Turkish government to improve it's policy on ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities. Unfortunately, we do not see much progress in this domain.
In particular, killings of innocent citizens in
We support further EU enlargement - but it must be based strictly on the