Turkey referendum marks ‘clean break’ With EU: Intelligence report

Turkey’s decades-long bid to join the European Union has essentially collapsed with the results of the constitutional referendum that gave President Recep Tayyip Erdogan the most expansive powers of any leader in the nation’s modern history, the private intelligence firm Soufan Group said in a report on Tuesday.

“Ankara and the EU still must cooperate on the refugee crisis as well as energy and economic issues, but the relationship is likely to face unprecedented challenges,” the report stated.

Although Turkey and the European Union will likely continue cooperating in areas of economics and energy, Turkey’s position on refugees has the potential to further destabilize the bloc as it confronts growing nationalism and anti-immigrant sentiment, the report explained.

Furthermore, the report predicted the relationship between Turkey and the United States will continue to evolve with a primary focus on counterterrorism.

In November, the EU Parliament voted to suspend talks on Turkey’s bid for EU membership due to a crackdown on political opponents by Erdogan. The Soufan report said those conditions could be exacerbated by the increase in presidential powers.