We have maintained throughout that the EU must allow Turkey a fair chance to prove itself by opening membership negotiations with it. It has been stressed from these columns that the EU's decision to leave these negotiations "open ended" was a good decision.
Turkey had to successfully implement all the changes required by membership before it could be admitted. So, from time to time, we flashed warning signals for our own people and politicians to see when we noticed that Turkey was slipping its moorings.
In December 2005 at the Federal Council in London we overcame some stiff opposition to secure the approval by European Movement International of a resolution condemning Turkey for allowing the prosecution of Orhan Pamuk who this year was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature.
He had been prosecuted for criticising in a newspaper interview the fact that Turks are not allowed to discuss the Armenian genocide and the massacre of thousands of Kurds.
The inclusion of Turkey in the EU under the right conditions will see the extension of the democratic and pluralistic security community eastwards. It will mean that Muslims and Christians can live under the same roof in peace; that the 'clash of civilizations' is not inevitable.
It will show that the spread of democracy cannot be achieved by the force of arms but by peaceful means. Turkey is an opportunity for us to show that the European model of international affairs is superior to any other.
But for this to come true Turkey must introduce the necessary reforms and Europe cannot content itself with cosmetic changes. If the EU admits Turkey, which has only adopted cosmetic changes that would spell the end of it all.
Hence, we have always emphasised that we need to be frank to Turkey and show her what we expect of her if she wants to join the EU.