3 billion euros, speed up of visa liberalisation and acceleration of EU accession negotiations. This is briefly what Turkey got on Sunday’s summit with EU leaders in exchange of limiting the refugees’ arrivals to Europe. Article 2 of the Treaty of the EU states that “The Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities.” However, as everything, also this values have their price.
This year marks the 11th anniversary of the big “Eastern enlargement” when 10 countries from Central and Eastern Europe, who have in common an undemocratic past, become part of the EU. The “Big Bang” enlargement has been followed by two smaller ones, with the last in 2013, when Croatia joined. After the 2004 enlargement, some were talking about an “enlargement fatigue”, which is apparently still persisting. Even if there are still some countries in the waiting room, the enlargement is on hold for at least the next 5 years. Can this be considered still as a simpton of the “fatigue” or an actual stop?