ANKARA - Turkey could hold a referendum on whether to continue membership talks with the European Union next year, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday, and repeated his warning to Brussels that it needed to "make up its mind" on Turkish accession.
"Let's wait until the end of the year and then go to the people. Let's go to the people since they will make the final call. Even Britain went to the people. Britain said 'let's exit', and they left," Erdogan said.
He lambasted European Parliament President Martin Schulz, who said this month the detention of opposition politicians and the extent of post-coup purges "call into question the basis for the sustainable relationship between the EU and Turkey".
"What are you? Since when do you have the authority to decide for Turkey? How can you, who have not taken Turkey into the EU for 53 years, find the authority to make such a decision?" Erdogan said.
"This people makes its own decisions, cuts its own umbilical cord," he said.