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EU, Turkish Leaders Hold Talks Ahead of Crucial Brussels Summit


Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has rejected a European Union request that his country move towards recognizing Cyprus before next week's EU summit.

Turkish officials announced the development in Brussels following talks Friday between the Prime Minister and EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.

The two leaders spoke one week before a scheduled EU summit, at which European leaders are expected to approve membership negotiations with Turkey and to set a date for the talks.

EU officials say that Turkey should recognize Cyprus, an EU member state. Ankara currently has diplomatic ties only with the Turkish-dominated part of the divided island.

Also, Friday, Turkey again expressed concern at reports that the European Union wants to toughen entry requirements for Ankara, in the face of resistance of some states to Turkish EU membership.

Some information for this report provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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