Wednesday 21 February 2018

Turkey may hold referendum on EU membership

A poster of Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan ahead of the referendum to expand the powers of the presidency (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
A poster of Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan ahead of the referendum to expand the powers of the presidency (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

Turkey's president said the country may hold a Brexit-like referendum on pursuing European Union membership.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was speaking on Saturday at a Turkish-UK forum in the southern city of Antalya.

He made the proposal as tensions continue to escalate between Ankara and European governments ahead of an April 16 referendum to expand the powers of the Turkish presidency.

Bringing up Brexit - the British departure from the EU - Erdogan said a similar referendum "might" be held after the April 16 vote, adding that he would respect whatever the people decided.

At a rally earlier on Saturday, Erdogan lashed out those who claimed Turkey would not be let into the EU if the referendum passed.

He said: "Turkey is no one's whipping boy."

Press Association

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