Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

Question on Enlargement to Danish Presidency

Delivered in Plenary - 3rd July 2002

Mr President

Tannock (PPE-DE). - Mr President, enlargement is a noble project and we owe it to our eastern European neighbours, whom we failed at Potsdam to protect from the yoke of communism, to welcome them back into the European family of nations. But there are many problems, ranging from the Irish ratification of Nice - though surely a plan B is already there if necessary - to the over-generous direct payments under CAP to farmers and the potential for large-scale immigration, particularly by the poorly integrated and nomadic Roma communities of whom there are very large numbers in eastern European countries.

I particularly welcome the two British Commonwealth countries, Malta and Cyprus, joining and this will increase the use of English in this institution, which I fully support. But I have concerns over Cyprus, as already mentioned on the other side of the House. It may have to join as a divided island, with all that this means for possible Turkish annexation of the north. What pressures can be applied, particularly to Mr Denktaş, to make a deal with Mr Clerides to enable a united Cyprus to join the Union in 2004, as we would all wish in this House I am sure?