Turkey no longer needs to join the European Union, but will not unilaterally abandon the stalled EU accession talks, China's Xinhua news agency reported late Sunday.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told the Turkish parliament that the country no longer needs to join the EU.
"We will not be the side which gives up.
“To tell the truth, we don't need EU membership anymore.
"The EU failed us in a fight against terrorism," Erdogan was reported as saying on Sunday, although he also suggested the bloc still needed Turkey.
"If the EU is going to leap forward, there is only one way to do so…and it is to grant Turkey membership and start an action of cultural and economic growth," Erdogan said.