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EU Parliament Postpones Vote On Turkmen Treaty


Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov

The European Parliament has again postponed a vote on a trade agreement with Turkmenistan, RFE/RL's Turkmen Service reports.

Daniel Caspary, an EU parliamentarian from Germany who has written a report on Turkmenistan, asked that the vote be deferred because the parliament wants additional documents from the EU Council and the European Commision.

But Caspary told parliament not to hold the Interim Trade Agreement with Turkmenistan hostage to other political concerns.

Caspary had told RFE/RL that the EU needs to sign an Interim Trade Agreement with Turkmenistan as a signal to Ashgabat that it wants to build trust between the two sides.

Jan Marinus Wiersma, a spokesman for the Socialist group in the European Parliament, told RFE/RL last week that his group wants the Turkmen government to take serious steps to improve human rights, media freedom, and to lift a travel ban on citizens.

But he said he can give a conditional green light to the trade agreement with Turkmenistan.
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