ANKARA (Reuters) - Relations between the European Union and membership candidate Turkey are going through a "fragile" period, Turkish EU Affairs Minister Omer Celik said on Monday, accusing those who would call for a freeze in talks with Ankara of racism.

Celik was speaking at a news conference after meeting EU ambassadors in Ankara after strong European criticism of Turkey's arrest of pro-Kurdish lawmakers accused of links to Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants.

(Reporting by Tulay Karadeniz and Humeyra Pamuk; Writing by Daren Butler)