Erdogan: Turkey still committed to EU membership despite bloc’s failed promises

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a meeting to announce judiciary reforms in Ankara on Thursday, May 30, 2019. (Presidential Press Office/Reuters)
Updated 30 May 2019

Erdogan: Turkey still committed to EU membership despite bloc’s failed promises

ANKARA: Turkey maintains its commitment to a full European Union membership even though the bloc has not kept its promises, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday, a day after an EU report criticized Ankara on its judiciary and economic state.
Announcing a number of judiciary reforms in Ankara, Erdogan said they would effectively ban only “problematic” sections of websites instead of imposing a full access ban.
Online encyclopedia Wikipedia has been blocked in Turkey since 2017 over a law that allows authorities to ban access to websites deemed a threat to national security.
Erdogan also said Turkey remained committed to its “zero tolerance” policy on torture — two days after an Ankara lawyers’ group said five foreign ministry personnel reported they had been tortured and mistreated in custody.


Libya’s navy intercepts about 150 Europe-bound migrants

Updated 19 October 2019

Libya’s navy intercepts about 150 Europe-bound migrants

  • Three rubber boats with 148 Arab and African migrants were stopped off Libya’s western towns of Zuwara and Sabrata
  • Libya has emerged as a major transit point for migrants fleeing war and poverty to Europe

CAIRO: Libya’s coast guard says it has intercepted around 150 Europe-bound migrants off the country’s Mediterranean coast.
Spokesman Ayoub Gassim said Saturday the migrants had been returned to shore and would be taken to a detention center in the capital, Tripoli.
Gassim said the three rubber boats with 148 Arab and African migrants were stopped off Libya’s western towns of Zuwara and Sabrata Friday, and included 15 women and 11 children.
Libya has emerged as a major transit point for migrants fleeing war and poverty to Europe. In recent years, the EU has partnered with Libya’s coast guard and other local groups to stem the dangerous sea crossings.
Rights groups, however, say those policies leave migrants at the mercy of armed groups or confined in squalid detention centers rife with abuses.