The disagreement between Turkey and the European Union on the flow of migrants must be resolved in the coming days. That is what the presidents of the European Council and the European Commission say Monday evening after a visit from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Erdogan was in Brussels because he wants support from the EU and NATO in the struggle in Syria and the reception of refugees. Erdogan has already stated on several occasions that Turkey cannot handle the large number of refugees from Syria and that he needs help from the European Union.
In the coming days, the European Union and Turkey will discuss the differences of opinion on the migration flow recorded in the Turkey deal.
The head of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyden said before the meeting that Erdogan must first stop to encourage migrants to make the crossing to Greece. Only then can we talk about help from the European Union. “The events on the Turkish-Greek border indicate a political pressure from Turkey. Only when that pressure is gone can we continue talking.”
Turkey currently houses around 3.6 million refugees and the current unrest in the Syrian region of Idlib could add another hundred thousand.
More than a week ago, Erdogan opened the border with Greece. Tens of thousands of migrants left Turkey, but did not enter Greece and have since been trapped in a piece of no man’s land. Both countries do not want to (re) admit migrants and are firing tear gas back and forth.