Turkey's chief negotiator for European Union membership talks has called for a joint drive to expand rights and freedoms in the country.

"I can't say the level we have reached in Turkey is perfect. But we have come a long way. And from now on, the remedy we have been looking for is not on the streets and in violence. It is at the parliament and in the reform process," Egemen Bagis told reporters.

Bagis held a meeting on Friday with EU ambassadors who visited the central province of Konya to attend the 736th Sebi Aruz Ceremonies (the anniversary of the death of Mevlana Jalal al-Din Rumi).

"I was asked by the ambassadors where the government's democratic initiative would lead the country to. And I told them that all citizens in Turkey will have the same rights regardless of their ethnic origins, religious views and political preferences just like peoples do in Germany, the Netherlands and Spain. This is where the democratic initiative will lead Turkey to. Nothing less, nothing more," Bagis said.

Bagis said the EU ambassadors attached great importance to the democratic initiative, which he said was project of unity.

The EU negotiator said Turkey needed a new contemporary and democratic constitution that complied with the European Union standards.
"It is a mere dream to join the EU with today's constitution," Bagis said.

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