• 17 September 2014: reestablishment of the group in the new European Parliament term.

 

  • 6 October 2014: SODEM (Social Democratic Municipalities of Turkey) cocktail reception with Commissioner Maroš Šefčovič.

 

  • 22 October 2014: farewell meeting with Commissioner for Enlargement and European neighbourhood policy, Mr. Štefan Füle, to discuss Turkey’s 2014 Progress Report.

 

  • 12 November 2014: Lunch meeting with Minister for EU Affairs and Chief Negotiator Volkan Bozkır.

 

  • 17 November 2014: “Past, present and future of EU-Turkey relations: where do we stand today?” briefing to TÜRKONFED’s delegation (Turkish Enterprise and Business Confederation) visit to the European Parliament.

 

  • 3 December 2014: “Europe’s Future and Turkey”, round table discussion with Mr. Haluk Dinçer, President of TÜSIAD, on how to converge Turkey’s political and economic perspectives with the common European values and interests.

 

  • 16 December 2014: Friends of Turkey statement in response to the arrests of journalists and silencing of political dissent.

 

  • 13 January 2015: Meeting with Afif Demirkıran, Co-President of the EU-Turkey Joint Parliamentary Committee, to discuss the political situation in Turkey.

 

  • 28 January 2015: meeting with Turkey’s EU Ambassador Selim Yenel to convey him the group’s concern regarding the deterioration of freedom of expression and freedom of media in Turkey and hand him a copy of the letter sent to Mr. Ahmed Davutoğlu, Prime Minister of Turkey (with copy to Mr. Bozkir, Turkish EU Minister) on the same issue.

 

  • 10 March 2015: meeting with MEP Kati Piri (S&D/The Netherlands), European Parliament’s Turkey rapporteur, to discuss the first draft of her report on Turkey.

 

  • 26 March 2015: breakfast meeting “Challenges and perspectives of the Turkish media sector” hosted by Friends of Turkey in collaboration with Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung Turkey. Exchange of views with Utku Çakırözer, Turkish journalist and former editor-in-chief of Cumhuriyet daily newspaper, and Eylem Yanardağoğlu, Assistant Professor at the New Media Department at Kadir Has University.

 

  • 14 April 2015: meeting with a delegation of Turkish diplomats dealing with EU affairs.

 

  • 14 April 2015: meeting with representatives of two major civil society organisations, Denge ve Denetleme Ağı (Checks and Balances Network) and Oy ve Ötesi (Vote and Beyond).

 

  • 28 May 2015: “Turkey and EU: A Story Of Unrequited Love”, private conversation with Elif Shafak, Turkey’s most-read woman writer and award-winning novelist.

 

  • 12 June 2015: “Turkey: Elections and Beyond” conference jointly organised with CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs) and CITpax (Toledo International Centre for Peace) to analyse the implications of the June elections in three different areas: the “Kurdish question”, the relations with the EU and the foreign policy of Turkey, with particular emphasis on the Middle East.

 

  • 16 June 2015: meeting with Turkish Civil Society Organization representatives, part of the Active Civil Society Participation in EU Accession Talks project.

 

  • 30 June 2015: breakfast meeting “Turkey’s C20 priorities[1]: consultation with the European Parliament” hosted by Friends of Turkey in collaboration with IKV (Economic and Development Foundation).

 

  • 1 July 2015: meeting with Simon Mordue, Director for Strategy and Turkey, Directorate General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations, to discuss Turkey’s relations with the EU after the elections and the upcoming Progress Report 2015.

 

  • 1 September 2015: meeting with the coordinators of the 21 EU Information Centres in Turkey to discuss Turkey’s EU accession negotiations.

 

  • 15 September 2015: “Cyprus reunification in the making: The role of the business community”, hosted by MEPs Artis Pabriks and Knut Fleckenstein, members of Friends of Turkey. Discussion on the role of the business communities of Cyprus in the peace process, with keynote speeches from Fikri Toros, President of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce (KTTO), and Phidias Pilides, President of Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KEBE). Accompanied by the screening of the documentary film “Ghost Airport of the Divided Capital.”

 

  • 16 September 2015: Friends of Turkey statement on the escalation of violence in Turkey, including adherence to the cross-party appeal for peace in Turkey from chairs of the European Parliament political groups.

 

  • 6 October 2015: meeting with Javier Niño Pérez, new Head of the Turkey Division at the European External Action Service.

 

  • 13 October 2015: “Combatting youth unemployment in Accession Countries: Common Problems, Common Solutions” in collaboration with SODEM (Association of Social Democratic Municipalities). With the participation of Christiane Westphal, Enlargement, pre-accession, neighbourhood policy officer at DG EMPL and representatives from the Missions of Albania, Montenegro and Serbia to the EU.

 

  • 14 October 2015: “The Role of Turkish Municipalities in the EU Accession Process: Potentiality vs. Actuality”, in collaboration with the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung EU Office and SODEM (Association of Social Democratic Municipalities). With the participation of Simon Mordue, Director for Strategy and Turkey at DG NEAR, and Bernard Soulage, former chair of the Turkey Working Group in the Committee of the Regions.

 

  • 20 October 2015: working lunch with Professor Dr. Beril Dedeoğlu, Turkey’s interim Minister for EU Affairs.

 

  • 10 November 2015: roundtable debate “How to transform Turkey’s EU accession process to an added-value for Europe’s future?” with a keynote speech by H.E. Ambassador Selim Yenel, Permanent Delegate of Turkey to the EU, and opening remarks by Artis Pabriks,  Friends of Turkey Co-chair, and Myriam Ferran, Head of Unit – Turkey, DG NEAR – European Commission, moderated by Dr. Bahadır Kaleağası, TÜSİAD International Coordinator & President of the Bosphorus Institute.

 

  • 12 November 2015: presentation of the report “Promoting dialogue and solutions: what European legislators think of Turkey?”, conducted by Young Friends of Turkey and TESEV (Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation), and debate on the future of EU-Turkey relations with Bodil Ceballos, Greens/EFA Turkey shadow rapporteur, H.E. Ambassador Selim Yenel, Permanent Delegate of Turkey to the EU, and Javier Niño Pérez, Head of Turkey Division, European External Action Service (EEAS).

 

  • 17 November 2015: roundtable meeting with the mayor of Izmir’s Metropolitan Municipality, Mr. Aziz Kocaoglu, President of Izmir’s Chamber of Commerce, the President of Aegean Region Chamber of Industry, Chairwoman of Izmir Commodity Exchange, the Chairman of the Aegean Region Exporter Association, the President of the Aegean Industrialists and Businessmen Association, the mayor of Konak and the mayor of Karabaglar (districts of Izmir), with MEPs Ismail Ertug, Friends of Turkey co-chair, Kati Piri, EP Turkey rapporteur, and Ernest Maragall, Greens/EFA member, and Patrick Paquet, Deputy Head of Turkey Unit at DG NEAR.

 

  • 19 November 2015: meeting with TÜSIAD board members, Simone Kaslowski, executive board member, and Dr. Bahadır Kaleağası, TÜSİAD International Coordinator.

 

  • 24 November 2015: brief encounter with Deniz Gamze Ergüven, director of winning LUX film Prize[2] for ‘Mustang’.

 

  • 2 December 2015: meeting with a delegation from Denizli municipality.

 

  • 8 December 2015: presentation of TÜSIAD’s report “A new era for the Customs Union and the business world” to the Committee on International Trade monitoring group on Turkey.

 

[1] The C20 (short for ‘Civil 20’) is a platform for civil society organisations from around the world to engage with G20 governments on the key issues facing our world today.

 

[2] Since 2007, the European Parliament LUX FILM PRIZE casts an annual spotlight on films that go to the heart of European public debate. The prize, decided on the basis of a vote by the Members of the European Parliament, is intended to celebrate the diversity and the social relevance of cinema in Europe. The LUX FILM PRIZE has become a quality label backing European film productions.