October 24, 2010 in Nation/World

Groups seek vote on Turkey’s EU bid

Associated Press

VIENNA, Austria – Several far-right parties that oppose Turkish membership in the European Union said Saturday they will push for an EU referendum on the subject.

Turkey began accession talks in 2005 but has made little progress, due mostly to a dispute over Cyprus – an EU member that is divided between the ethnic Greek south and Turkish north.

Austrian Freedom Party chief Heinz-Christian Strache and members of Belgium’s nationalist Flemish Interest Party, the Sweden Democrats, and the Danish People’s Party said Turkey has no place in Europe and that citizens should be allowed to weigh in on the matter.

“We are all simply of the firm opinion that Europe would go dramatically astray if one starts taking in non-European countries as members,” Strache said.

Strache and others spoke to reporters on the sidelines of a two-day meeting aimed at boosting the parties’ coordination.

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