EU: Turkey to shelter Syrian refugees and turn other immigrants back in return of €3 billion

The EU heads of state or government met with the Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu (in the middle) in the European Council of 29 November. After the meeting Donald Tusk, President of the European Council (first from left), Davutoglu and Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission held a Press conference. (Shoot location: Brussels – Belgium. Shoot date: 29/11/2015. Copyright credit 'The European Union').

The EU heads of state or government met with the Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu (in the middle) in the European Council of 29 November. After the meeting Donald Tusk, President of the European Council (first from left), Davutoglu and Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission held a Press conference. (Shoot location: Brussels – Belgium. Shoot date: 29/11/2015. Copyright credit ‘The European Union’).

A genuine Turkish bazaar took place last Sunday in Brussels during the meeting of the EU heads of state or government with the Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. The horse-trading was about what it will cost the EU to stem of the flow of immigrants who pass through Turkey on their way to Europe. Finally the price was set at €3 billion, for a round number of two million Syrian refugees to be accommodated or rather held, sheltered and fed in Turkey. However, nobody seemed happy with the outcome of the negotiations.

Davutoglu observed that the €3bn will go to the Syrian refugees not to Turkey and preferred to put the emphasis of the agreement to “a historic re-energizing of the Turkish EU accession talks “. Francois Hollande the French President had a completely different story to tell about the agreement with Turkey. While prematurely leaving the meeting, in relation to the Turkish EU accession talks he said “nothing has changed, there is no reason to accelerate or delay it”.

Hollande focuses on refugees

Hollande also emphasized the obligations of Ankara to close its borders with Syria and contribute to a viable political solution in this country. This was a direct hint that Turkey should stop rejecting the role the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad can play in a post civil war arragnment. Undoubtedly, the French President was adamant that the subject of the EU-Turkey meeting was the refugee problem and its repercussions. Obviously France, especially after the downing of the Russian war airplane by the Turks, doesn’t want to be seen as discussing an upgrade of the EU-Turkish relations. Lately, Moscow is quite choleric about whatever is related to Turkey and Europe knows it has to respect that.

Donald Tusk, the President of the European Council, speaking at the Press conference after the meeting, was not as clear as Hollande vis-à-vis Turkey. When summarizing the results of the negotiations, Tusk said “with today’s decision both sides committed to step up the tempo of the accession talks with the view to make progress but the benchmarks and the standards will remain the same”. Understandably, Tusk had to be more placating than Hollande with Turkey, because there were other EU member states, like Britain pressing hard for an acceleration of the Turkish EU accession talks.
Others think differently

It’s interesting though to further analyze what Tusk exactly said and when he said it. His final words at the very end of the Press conference were “…but the benchmarks and the standards will remain the same”. In this way, he reminded Davutoglu that all the Brussels reserves in relation to the Turkish EU accession talks are always there. No need to remind the reader, that Brussels is quite irritated with the downing of the Russian plane and the latest arrests of two prominent Turkish journalists. The Europeans clearly detest the overall undemocratic or even autocratic way the country is ruled by President Recep Tayip Erdogan.

Despite being a constitutionally non partisan head of state, Erdogan regularly oversteps his lawful role and actually rules the country as a party leader, which he is not any more. His war against the Kurds and his strategy to silence all vocal opposition, using the country’s police and judiciary structures quite arbitrarily, makes him an awkward interlocutor to Europe. That’s why the EU leaders, probably at the exception of the British premier David Cameron, do not want to be seen as yielding to his demands.

A difficult equation

Given all that Tusk had a very difficult task in conciliating the diverging European positions vis-à-vis Turkey. He knew that Brussels needs Turkey to stop the immigrant flows before crossing the borders of Europe. That’s why he emphasized that “Our agreement sets out a clear plan for the timely re-establishment of order at our shared frontier”. In short, Tusk asked Turkey to stop directing the refugee flows to the Greek borders in the Aegean islands and added that Europe is ready to pay €3bn for that.

It remains to be seen if Turkey will deliver her part of the deal and arrest the flow of refugees and immigrants coming through its Syrian borders, keep those who finally reach her soil there, and prevent them from travelling to Europe. The €3bn is meant to cover the cost of offering shelter to Syrian refugees and turn the other immigrants back. For most of the EU countries this is the meaning of EU-Turkey agreement signed last Sunday. Tusk had an obligation, mainly towards France, to also confirm that and to this effect he noted that the meeting was about creating in Turkey “a new Syrian Refugee Facility of €3 billion” and “stem the migration flow that is coming to the EU via Turkey”.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Catalonia’s vote for independence and the power of symbols

North Sea fisheries: MEPs back EU plan to sustain stocks of demersal species

Remembering slave trade offers chance to raise awareness, ‘oppose all forms of modern slavery’ – UNESCO

The psychology of pandemics

Welfare of transported animals: MEPs urge EU states to do a better job

A Sting Exclusive: “Seize the opportunity offered by Africa’s continental free trade area”, written by the Director General of UNIDO

A European student just sets the question of the day: What kind of education policies are missing in Europe?

What Ghana can teach us about integrating refugees

WEF Davos 2016 LIVE: “CO2 is not the problem, it is the symptom”, the pilots who crossed the world using solar energy cry out from Davos

US Tariffs on Steel and Aluminium: Statement of Trade Committee Chair

COP21 Breaking News_09 December: List of Recent Climate Funding Announcements

“Two Pack” approved: Is democracy chased away from Brussels?

Whose interests are protected by the new Mortgage Directive?

UN experts urge United Arab Emirates to release terminally ill woman to live her last days ‘in dignity’

Rehn ready to sacrifice part of the real economy

Parliament: No consent to EU budget until €11.2 billion unpaid bills are settled

Capital Markets Union: Making it easier for smaller businesses to get financing through capital markets

Medschool 4.0: how to succeed in the smart revolution of healthcare

European tourism remains a strong growth factor

Why medicine is relevant to the battle against climate change

Ambassador Zhang Ming: “Work Together for a Better Globalization”

Here are four steps SMEs can take for long-term success

EU fight against tax-evasion and money laundering blocked by Britain

Commission: Do it like the Americans in the food sector

How blockchain can manage the future electricity grid

European Commission requests that Italy presents a revised draft budgetary plan for 2019

Why are the Balkans’ political leaders meeting in Geneva this week?

Marking Sir Brian Urquhart’s 100th birthday, UN honours life-long servant of ‘we the peoples’

India’s economy is an ‘elephant that is starting to run’, according to the IMF

Is a deal over EU budget possible today?

Europe united in not supporting a US attack on Syria

The EU threatens to occupy Libya militarily; is another colonial war brewing?

What could a no-deal Brexit mean for developing countries?

More urgency needed to help increasing numbers ‘locked out’, before 2030, says UN’s Bachelet

Built by a woman: supporting the dreams of mum entrepreneurs

25 years on from genocide against the Tutsi, UN Chief warns of ‘dangerous trends of rising xenophobia, racism and intolerance’

Schools must look to the future when connecting students to the internet

Myanmar and UN agriculture agency agree framework to improve nutrition and food security

“We need to accelerate our negotiation on the China-EU Investment Treaty”, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang highlights from the 21st EU-China summit in Brussels

Impossible Brexit options: WTO or new referendum?

‘Ticking bomb’ health warning over deteriorating conditions facing Cyclone Idai victims

A new Europe for people, planet and prosperity for all

‘Chance for peace’ in South Sudan finally within reach, declares UN Peacekeeping chief

Do the giant banks ‘tell’ Britain to choose a good soft Brexit and ‘remain’ or else…?

Eurozone 2013: Where to?

Security spillovers from Trump’s trade wars: China, Germany prepare for global disorder

Will Turkey abandon the refugee deal and risk losing a bonanza of money?

Is our brave new world about to burst?

Giving humanitarian help to migrants should not be a crime, according to the EP

Commission deepens criticism on German economic policies

Terrorist content online: companies to be given just one hour to remove it

5 things you need to know about creativity

The EU tells the bare truth to the UK that there is no such thing as easy divorces

LGBT community in Chechnya faces ‘new wave of persecution’: UN human rights experts

3 steps to making multistakeholder partnerships a powerful force

From Russia with love: Brussels and Moscow close to an agreement on Ukraine’s gas supplies

Access to health in the developping world

UN police officer recognized for protecting vulnerable Somali women from abuse

Newly displaced fleeing attacks in northeast Nigeria, top 2,000

Eurozone: How safe are our deposits? Which banks will survive?

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s