Turkey, EU agree to continue ‘expert-level’ talks on visa exemption
AA photoTurkish and EU officials have agreed to continue “expert-level” talks on granting visa waivers to Turkish citizens visiting Europe, in return for implementation of the migration deal, as the two sides bid to overcome the impasse over disagreements on Ankara’s legal definition of terrorism.
The meeting was the first Turkey-EU conversation since the change of government in Ankara, amid growing reaction from Turkey’s government against Brussels’ pressure over the anti-terror laws. Turkey has vowed to cease implementation of the migrant deal if the EU does not “keep its promises” on visa liberalization.
According to diplomatic sources, the two sides agreed to hold “expert-level” talks next week, followed by another meeting between Çavuşoğlu, Çelik and Timmermans. They also underlined that all these efforts would be followed by another leader-level meeting in the coming weeks.
The EU stresses that Turkey needs to fulfill three remaining criteria of 72 in order to obtain the right to visa-free travel for its citizens, including an alignment of its legal framework on terrorism. Ankara has said it will not make a change on the issue at a time when terrorist groups have been hitting Turkish targets, and has threatened to cease implementation of the migrant deal.