Turkey to Leave EU Funding Program Creative Europe

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Turkey's president faced down a summer coup

Tensions between the country and the European Union have intensified.

Turkey is planning to leave the European Union’s Creative Europe funding program, which supports film, TV and more, amid tensions between the Turkish government and the EU.

Turkey had joined the program, which supports culture and the arts with a $1.55 billion fund, in 2015. The EU has opened the program to a number of non-EU countries to expand its reach and share the benefits of cooperation.

The EU said it "regrets" the decision, but accepts it. The two parties must now negotiate details of the exit, which is set to take effect on Jan. 1.

Since a failed coup in Turkey in July, tensions with the EU have intensified. EU officials and EU member countries' politicians have criticized Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan for cracking down on alleged coup participants and supporters.

According to estimates, Creative Europe has supported Turkish projects, including films, with around $2.6 million so far.

It wasn't immediately clear if the withdrawal from Creative Europe would affect Turkey’s membership in European co-production fund Eurimages. The latter is run by the Council of Europe.