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France threatens Turkey with sanctions over Libya intervention

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France's foreign minister said on Wednesday that European Union foreign ministers would meet on July 13 to discuss Turkey and said new sanctions on Ankara could be considered.

"At our request there will be a meeting of EU foreign ministers on July 13 solely on the Turkish question," Jean-Yves Le Drian told a parliamentary hearing. "Sanctions have already been taken on Turkey by the EU over Turkey's drilling in the Cyprus economic zone. Other sanctions may be envisaged."

Turkey's efforts to forge a maritime zone across to Libya affects a swathe of nations. It's shipments of arms to its allies in the conflict and despatch of extremists fighters has also challenged both EU and Nato polices.

Last week Mr Le Drian demanded a discussion "without taboos" within the EU on its relationship with Turkey, which officially remains a candidate to join the bloc despite a stalled membership process.

"France considers it essential that the European Union very quickly opens a comprehensive discussion, without taboos and naivety, on the prospects for its future relationship with Ankara," he told the French Senate.

"The European Union must firmly defend its own interests because it has the means," he said as tensions spiralled between Paris and Ankara over the Libya conflict.
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