Are the Sanctions by the EU Against Turkey Realistic?

Foreign Minister of Luxembourg, Jean Asselborn made the imposition of economic sanctions by the EU against Turkey in connection with the policy of the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan against the opposition and journalists, RIA Novosti reported.

 ”I think if someone today is a defender of human rights in Turkey, he immediately is suspected to be a follower of Gulen or a terrorist,” – said Asselborn. The minister recalled that 50% of Turkey’s exports go to the EU countries, 60% of investment in Turkey comes from the EU. “This is an unlimited means of pressure, and at some point we will not give up the use of this means of pressure,” – said Asselborn in an interview to Deutschlandfunk radio.

Earlier, the deputies of the German Bundestag also proposed to consider the imposition of sanctions against Turkey. According to German politicians, Europe must respond to the situation in Turkey, where the “tyranny reigns.” Deputy Chairman of the Bundestag Claudia Roth called upon to break the agreement on refugees, which, she said, forced the EU to bear insults and blackmail from Erdogan, eadaily.com wrote.

In turn, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Austria, Sebastian Kurz called on to halt the negotiations with Turkey on the EU membership: “The state, which is trying to send to jail the opposition leaders and journalists, has no place in the European Union”, – said Kurtz. According to him, Erdogan has long crossed a red line.

It should be noted that the European Commission has prepared the most unfavorable report on Turkey in recent years. The report states that after the suppression of the military coup attempt on July 15, 110,000 military, police, judges and prosecutors have been arrested, accused of commitment to Gullenism.

However, Europe is particularly shocked by the arrest of deputies of the Kurdish Party of Peoples Democracy, including its co-chairs Selahattin Demirtaş and Figena Yuksedag. This became possible after the insistence of Erdogan to pass a law in Turkey on deprivation of immunity of deputies, which fully unleashed Erdogan in fighting opponents.

From this report, as well as statements by European officials, it becomes clear that the abolition of the EU visa regime for Turkish citizens will unlikely become reality.

On this background, Erdogan said that the country does not pay attention what others might say. “From now on, we will do everything needed for the welfare of the people and prosperity of our country. For example, we have been guided by this principle during the demonstrations in Taksim Gezi Park and the events of December 17-25″, – the head of state said.

In fact, Ankara never paid much attention to the international public opinion about its internal politics. Erdogan’s statement is more aimed at a domestic audience: in the context of dangerous development in the country, and more and more large-scale repressions by the Turkish authorities, the abolition of the visa regime would be seen as a major political victory, but now Erdogan has nothing to comfort his people but his own announcements.

The practical steps suggested by the Foreign Minister of Luxembourg, will create serious economic problems for Ankara.

What refers to the possible sanction by the EU against Turkey, according to experts, they seem less likely. For Europe, which is in financial and political crisis today, the cancelation of migration deal will cause serious problems. Europe in not much interested in cancelation of practical relations with Turkey, which means that for another time Europe will limit itself to pure statements.