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Enlargement

Page history last edited by Jasmine Ganeshalingam 13 years, 2 months ago




 

2004 Enlargement

 

The 2004 enlargement of the European Union saw the largest single enlargment of the European Union. The states concerned were the Eastern bloc states of Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Slovakia plus the former Yugoslav republic of Slovenia and the two Mediterranean islands of Cyprus and Malta. The enlargement occurred on 1st May 2004 and expanded the number of states within the EU to 25.

 


 

The 'Turkish Problem'

 

Main article:  ENLARGEMENT DEBATE: The 'Turkish Problem'

 


 

Initial negotiations and accession

 

After the Second World War Europe was divided into two main spheres of influence; the United States and the Soviet Union. The original European Economic Community was founded and allowed the US sphere to expand (O'Brennan: 2006). The Soviet Union extended its dominance within eastern Euorpe. By 1989, the Cold War was darwing to a close and the Soviet influence on eastern Europe beginning to collapse. Soon enough, the former Soviet influenced states of eastern Euope began to liberate thier economies into free-market democracies and it was clear that the question of enlargement was soon to arise (Nugent: 2004). The Acquis Communautaire was divided into 31 chapters for negotiations between the EU and the candidate countries prior to the enlargement. The Treaty of Accession 2003 was finally signed on 16th April 2003 between the EU and the ten states that were to be welcomed into the EU. Upon the treaty coming into force on 1st May 2004, there were widespread celebrations accross Europe to mark the special occassion. However, whilst there was celebration, the largest enlargement in the history of the EU has also led to certain problems which have affected certain states.


 

Issues

 

Cyprus is an island state in the Mediterranen Sea which has been divided by the Turkish invasion of 1974. The northern part of Cyprus is occupied by the Turkish military that established the illegal state of "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus" which is only recognised by Turkey. The rest of the island is internationally recognised as the Republic of Cyprus which has been established since 1960. It is this part of Cyprus which is recognised by all the member state of the European Union. Cyprus initally entered talks with the EU is hope of ending the land dispute but nothing has since been resolved. Since the Republic of Cyprus is the only part of the island which is recognised by the EU, the entire island is seen as a member of the European Union.

 

Issues have also been raised by citizens of the western European states regarding the sudden movement of people after the enlargment. Whilst some states did put in place certain regulations which restricted mass migration, the number of people moving from eastern Europe to the west, mostly in search of work, has increased. This led to criticism in some of the more relaxed states such as the United Kingdom and Ireland who have since tightened thier immigration laws.

 


Disintegration of the EU

 

Main article:  Disintegration of the EU

 

 

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