December 1, 2021

Ever since Turkey was declared an accession candidate by the European Council in December 1999, the relationship between Ankara and Brussels has constantly been developing.

As a diplomatic mission, the Delegation of the European Union to Turkey operates under the terms of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. The Delegation maintains a wide range of contacts with public authorities, political parties, business circles, academia and think tanks, civil society organisations (CSOs) and cultural operators. In addition, it implements a comprehensive information and communication programme aimed at fostering the visibility and understanding of the EU, its values and its activities in Turkey.

The EU support to civil society is an important priority of financial assistance to Turkey. A dynamic civil society is one where citizens can freely associate and engage in civic action. This way they can help shape government policy and make sure that the voices of people are heard. Civil Society Organizations are key actors in expressing citizens’ demands and needs, and in encouraging active citizenship. When it comes to matters of public interest, including the EU accession process, CSOs can stimulate and expand the space for dialogue and cooperation.

As highlighted in the Revised Indicative Strategy Paper for Turkey 2014-2020, the EU support to civil society has three objectives:

To support the development of civil society, allowing its more active participation in democratic policy and decision-making processes;
To promote a culture of fundamental rights and dialogue; and
To enhance civil society dialogue and inter-cultural exchange between civil societies in Turkey and Europe.
For more information on EU activities in Turkey click here.