EU Commission Approves the Beginning of Membership Negotiations with Turkey
Wednesday, October 6, 2004 3:05 PM

The Commission of the European Communities has recommended to the European Council and the Parliament that negotiations begin toward membership in the European Union for Turkey. Recognition of political reforms -- in Turkey’s human rights record, its economy and its judiciary system -- contributed to the decision that moves Turkey forward on the path to EU membership.

The decision to pursue membership will require the consent of all 25 member states when they meet in December. Membership negotiations may take as long as a decade, with no guarantee of the outcome. Turkey would be the first largely Muslim country in the primarily Christian European Union.

Compiled from:

Europa/European Commission website, Press Release IP/04/1180, 6 October 2004, complete text here

Commission of the European Communities, Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament, Recommendation of the European Commission on Turkey’s progress toward accession, Brussels, 6 October 2004, complete text here (PDF, 19 pages)

Elaine Sciolino, "Europe Union Gives Turkey a First, Tentative Welcome", The New York Times online, 6 October 2004,