Turkey: Halting deal to readmit migrants from EU ‘not currently on agenda’
AA photoAnkara is not considering cancelling an agreement with the European Union to readmit migrants who previously reached the bloc illegally from Turkish territory, Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmuş has said.
“It is now the EU’s turn to fulfill its responsibilities. I believe it will act in line with the deal, as Turkey has done so much for it. The issue of canceling the Readmission Agreement is not on our agenda at the present time,” Kurtulmuş, also the government spokesperson of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), told reporters after a cabinet meeting late on June 6.
“Turkey is continuing the negotiation with determination. We want to reach a result. The drop in the number of refugees arriving in Europe is clear evidence that Turkey is taking the deal seriously,” he added, warning that the deal should not be an issue of domestic politics in EU countries.
The deal between Brussels and Ankara to stem the flow of illegal migrants into Europe has been hampered by disagreements over Turkey’s counter-terrorism law, which the European Union wants to see brought in line with EU standards.
Turkey has accused Europe of throwing up new hurdles to fully implementing the deal, which is meant to give Turks visa-free travel to the EU in return for curbing illegal migration.
Turkey’s government says it has already met the EU’s criteria for visa-free travel and that it will not change its anti-terrorism laws any further.