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EU halts sanctions on Turkey oil executives as ties improve

The European Union has frozen plans to blacklist more senior executives at Turkey’s state-owned Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO), four diplomats said, in the clearest sign that a diplomatic offensive by Ankara this year is bearing fruit, Reuters reported.

EU halts sanctions on Turkey oil executives as ties improve

EU halts sanctions on Turkey oil executives as ties improve

STEPANAKERT, MARCH 19 , ARTSAKHPRESS: EU leaders in December had proposed asset freezes and travel bans over Turkey’s “unauthorised drilling activities” for natural gas in disputed waters in the eastern Mediterranean, although they did not specify individuals.

The EU had also agreed to weigh tougher economic sanctions at a summit on March 25-26, after a difficult year in which Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan expressed publicly his hope that protests in France would topple President Emmanuel Macron.

But a more constructive tone from Erdogan this year, German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s support for a more conciliatory approach and the first direct talks between old foes Turkey and Greece in five years have all helped to change the mood.

The new administration of U.S. President Joe Biden has also urged Brussels not to impose sanctions at a time when Turkey, a NATO ally and EU candidate country, appears more willing to compromise, European and U.S. diplomats said.

“Work has stopped on additional blacklistings of Turkish individuals, and we are not talking of economic sanctions anymore,” one EU diplomat said, as quoted by the source. 

A second EU diplomat said the work “never really took off” and a third said “the diplomatic track is being prioritised”

EU leaders in December had proposed asset freezes and travel bans over Turkey’s “unauthorised drilling activities” for natural gas in disputed waters in the eastern Mediterranean, although they did not specify individuals.

The EU had also agreed to weigh tougher economic sanctions at a summit on March 25-26, after a difficult year in which Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan expressed publicly his hope that protests in France would topple President Emmanuel Macron.

But a more constructive tone from Erdogan this year, German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s support for a more conciliatory approach and the first direct talks between old foes Turkey and Greece in five years have all helped to change the mood.

The new administration of U.S. President Joe Biden has also urged Brussels not to impose sanctions at a time when Turkey, a NATO ally and EU candidate country, appears more willing to compromise, European and U.S. diplomats said.

“Work has stopped on additional blacklistings of Turkish individuals, and we are not talking of economic sanctions anymore,” one EU diplomat said, as quoted by the source. 

A second EU diplomat said the work “never really took off” and a third said “the diplomatic track is being prioritised”


     

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