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The Baffling Short-sightedness in the EU-Turkey-Cyprus Triangle


Diehard believers in Turkey’s European future had, for a brief moment, hung their hopes on the European Parliament (EP) as the key to unlocking the poisonous stalemate in Turkey’s ailing accession process. The glimmer of light had come with the Lisbon Treaty, which could have been used to unblock the stalemate over the Direct Trade Regulation (DTR) between the EU and northern Cyprus by granting a voice to the EP on the matter. Breaking the stalemate would not have magically removed all obstacles to Turkey’s protracted accession process. But it would have breathed new life and instilled a dose of much-needed optimism in the troubled relations between Turkey and the Union. Alas, that opportunity has been lost and, with it, the short-term hope of a rosier future for Cyprus, Turkey and the EU as a whole.