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Human rights in European Union’s foreign policy: Universal in discourse, flexible in practice

Selin Merzuka Türkeş

No 21, RECON Online Working Papers Series from RECON

Abstract: Establishing a cornerstone, a fundamental reference point in the new world order, human rights have been a very much cherished but very loosely adopted concept. Thus, in international relations, human rights emerged as a critical issue while the European Union appeared as a remarkable player. Correspondingly, within the European context, human rights stand not only as a defining principle of the European Union but also as a tool of its foreign policy. However, parallel to the difficulties experienced in establishing a common foreign policy, the implication of human rights in the EU's relations with third countries remained problematic. In this regard, this paper aims to bring about a closer look at the function of human rights in EU’s foreign policy by analyzing the Union’s relations with Turkey in terms of human rights. Accordingly, the focus will be on major problematic areas in the EU’s human rights policy towards Turkey, with a special emphasis on the discrepancies between the rhetoric and practice.

Keywords: CFSP/ESDP; political science (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2011-08-15
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