EU-Turkey Summit on refugee to try to forge a final agreement on matter

17 March 2016
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In the wake of concerns that the refugee crisis could turn into a full blown humanitarian one in Greece, the 2-day EU28 Summit on the matter is scheduled to convene Thursday, March 17 in Brussels. Following lasts weeks provisional agreement between the EU and Turkey on the readmission exchange plan of one for one refugee the EU members and Turkey hope to hammer out a final plan that would address the refugee crisis on in a more coordinated and permanent manner. Greece attends the Summit with hopes to ensure a guarantee that the relocation program will take effect at last and that Turkey will finally control the refugee flow of into Greece. So far there is no indication that the Balkan route will open to allow refugees trapped in Greece to move towards the north of Europe. Ankara had tabled some demands in order to cooperate, some of which are associated with the opening of Turkey’s EU accession chapters, something Cyprus is opposed to. The European Commission also rejects any connection between Turkey’s EU admission procedures and the refugee crisis. There seems to be a general agreement on the lifting of travel visas to the EU from Turkey, as well as economic aid worth 6 billion Euros to Turkey to help it deal with the refugees pouring in from Syria. Greek PM Alexis Tsipras, who had to deal with a sudden government crisis at home over the use of the name of ‘Macedonia’ by one of his top ministers, is expected to meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande. Talks with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu will commence during the working dinner on Thursday.

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