Greece’s only hope is Turkey to stem refugee flow

24 March 2016
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The Greek government faces the difficulties emerged concerning the implementation of the EU-Turkey agreement on refugee signed a few days ago, while the recent terrorist attacks in Europe makes things more difficult for Greece.

Speaking at SYRIZA’s political secretariat meeting on Wednesday, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said the fact that refugee is being addressed as a European problem is a very positive development adding that the solution of refugee crisis is based on the cooperation with Turkey and not on de facto legalization of unilateral practices. However, the government admits at the same time that Turkey does not cooperate as it had agreed.

The government hopes that Turkey will stop the refugee flow. But, even if the huge flow of refugees stops, refugees and immigrants will still continue coming and being stuck in Greece.

In the meantime, due to recent terrorist attacks in Brussels, the second part of the agreement concerning the relocation of refugees in EU countries seems to be on hold. Poland has already announced that it will not accept immigrants in the framework of the relocation program as it was agreed by EU.

Following the telephone conversation Mr. Tsipras had on Tuesday with German Chancellor Angela Merkel requesting Germany to put some pressure on Turkey so as to implement its part of the agreement, Mr. Tsipras had a phone contact with NATO secretary general Jens Stoltenberg.

According to sources, Tsipras expressed to Stoltenberg the government’s discontent that NATO’s action has not produced the expected results, and the refugee flow continues unabated from Turkey.

During the telephone conversation, the Prime Minister stressed that the neighboring country needs to adhere to its commitments under the agreement on NATO activation and the terms of the EU-Turkey agreement.

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