Turkish President says the country will not be affected without EU accession

Turkey would respect an eventual decision by EU countries to deny Turkey full membership after the completion of accession talks, Turkish President Abdullah Gül said Monday, but urged EU politicians not to hamper the ongoing process.

“We will [accept] not being an EU member if the people of any EU country do not want [us] and consider Turkey a burden,” Gül told a press conference with his German counterpart Christian Wulff on Monday, referring to eventual referendums on Turkey’s accession.

The president made his remarks while visiting Germany in the framework of celebrations marking the 50th anniversary of a labor-force-exchange agreement between Turkey and Germany.

Asked whether Turkey was still enthusiastic for EU accession, Gül reasserted Ankara’s strategic goal of full membership, but appeared unruffled about the possibility of an ultimate failure.

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