Turkey is among the largest Muslim nations in the world and has a dynamic modern economy that is rapidly expanding. It has been governed for the past decade by the Justice an Development Party which can be classified as a moderate Muslim entity. Turkey has petitioned the European Union for entry, but the application has been stalled as EU leaders ponder the question of allowing entry to a new group of Muslims.
French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe fears a new nation whose size raises new issues. “The fiscal crisis proves again that our political project for the union cannot handle the membership of a country of Turkey’s size.” German President Christian Wulff has a different view. He believes the EU made a promise to allow Turkey to seek membership and the application should be honored.
Of course, the unstated issue is whether European Union nations want to allow millions of Muslim possible entry into their lands since once in, all citizens of the EU can travel to other countries. We suspect it is the “Muslim issue” which most concerns EU members.