"Erdogan fights back against critics of EU accession
By Vincent Boland in Ankara
Published: April 27 2005 18:06 | Last updated: April 27 2005 18:06
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey's prime minister, on Wednesday defended reform aimed at preparing for European Union in an attempt to regain the leadership initiative after weeks of mounting criticism at home and abroad.
Insisting that Turkey was not wavering from reform Mr Erdogan said: 'I want to state clearly that there is no slowing down. I cannot understand those who claim that we have slowed down our membership process. Even our opponents cannot deny that we are closer to the EU now than we have ever been.' "
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