European Union membership talks

Those are very busy days for diplomacy as the European Union started the membership talks with Turkey. For me, Istanbul is already one of the biggest metropols of Europe and now the long journey has begun for this truth to become offical. It would possibly take at least 10-15 years for full membership status yet it is an important stage as it would affect the future international diplomacy of Turkey.

How will that affect the city of Istanbul? No short term affects I believe but it might increase it’s tourist population and enrich it’s diversity. Hopefully the Istanbul will become one of the biggest cultural and art metropols of Europe as it’s offering many different cultural values melted at the same pot.

5 Comments so far

  1. Wes (unregistered) on October 17th, 2005 @ 3:54 am

    For me, Istanbul is already one of the biggest metropols of Europe

    Yeah, I’m an American and I was a tourist in Istanbul for a few days a couple weeks ago. It definitely feels like a European city to me. Ironically when you talk to Europeans opposed to, or uncomfortable with, Turkish ascention the most common statement is a vague “Turkey isn’t European”. Well I can’t speak out of personal experience about the rest of Turkey, but Istanbul is European.

  2. Mert Ulas (unregistered) on October 17th, 2005 @ 9:28 am

    Thank you Wes, usually the europeans who have visited Istanbul recognise it as an “European city” as well and hopefully as more people visit Istanbul it would be easier to break their prejudgements.

  3. tung lov (unregistered) on January 6th, 2006 @ 1:59 am

    europe has no proper deliniation because it isnt a continent. it’s just an extension of asia. for most of the last 3000 years of so called european history, all of turkiye would be included . the greeks didnt call it asia minor. it was the center of the world.

  4. Jennifer Gökmen (unregistered) on January 15th, 2006 @ 12:52 am

    I suppose it depends on the criteria for judging what “European” is. In terms of infrastructure, Turkey has a long way to go if measured against some other European countries. However, an undercurrent of the debate is the supposition that Turkey (Turks) are less CIVILIZED– the real reason why the country shouldn’t gain access.

    As an American living in Istanbul since 1994, this is an idea that I roundly refute (when not laughing outright at it). Through my life and travels here, I’ve found that even rural, illiterate Turks are more civilized than most of the westerners I’ve known (myself included). In the sense of interpersonal relations, Turkey most certainly does not depend upon the refined tutelage of the west to teach it how to behave; this culture is intrinsically more humanistic.

    Most of my expatriate circle would agree.

    Jennifer Eaton Gokmen
    Tales from the Expat Harem: Foreign Women in Modern Turkey

  5. Mert Ulas (unregistered) on January 19th, 2006 @ 12:23 am

    @Tung Lov: Well I agree that Turkey or Ottoman Empire always had been in the European history.

    @Jennifer Gökmen: Thank you for your comment, well I agree with your comments. I shall read Tales from the Expat Harem soon :)

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