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EU Leaders Kick Off Second Day Of Summit

17 December 2004 -- European Union leaders began a second day of summit talks in Brussels today -- after a brief delay -- hoping to clinch Turkey's agreement to a deal on launching accession talks.

A draft final statement prepared at the EU summit says that the EU expects Turkey to initial an accord today giving Cyprus de facto recognition and sign it before Ankara opens EU membership talks next year in October.

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan and his Dutch counterpart Jan Peter Balkenende, whose nation holds the EU presidency, met behind closed doors shortly before the summit resumed amid doubts over Ankara's position.