EU-Turkey plan to ease the migrant crisis in Europe ⋆
EU

EU-Turkey plan to ease the migrant crisis in Europe



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Turkey and the European Union signed an agreement today in order to alleviate the influx of migrants on Europe.

While the leaders of Turkey and the European Union welcomed the agreement, the United Nations has expressed concerns the agreement could violate international law.

Last year, more than a million people entered the EU illegally by boat, mainly going from Turkey to Greece, which is considered Europe’s biggest refugee crisis since World War Two.

The EU heads said “bold moves” were needed to tackle the crisis, and made the following proposals:

  • All new irregular migrants crossing from Turkey to the Greek islands will be returned to Turkey, with the EU meeting the costs. Irregular migrants means all those outside normal transit procedures, ie without documentation. The term “illegal migration” usually refers to people smuggling
  • In exchange for every returned Syrian, one Syrian from Turkey will be resettled in the EU
  • Plans to ease access to the EU for Turkish citizens will be speeded up, with a view to allowing visa-free travel by June 2016
  • EU payment of €3bn ($3.3bn; £2.2bn) promised in October will be speeded up, and a decision will be made on additional funding to help Turkey deal with the crisis. Turkey reportedly asked for EU aid to be increased to €6bn
  • Preparations will be made for a decision on the opening of new chapters in talks on EU membership for Turkey

 

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