Turkey is no one’s buffer country for migration, drugs, terror: Interior Minister Soylu
EDİRNE – Doğan News Agency
“Despite having differences with Europe in terms of opinion [of refugee migration], they are our natural partners. A significant number of these people want to go to Europe through us. Turkey is of course fulfilling its duties and will continue to do so [regarding this issue]. But Turkey is no one’s buffer or safety fence,” Soylu said during the “Cross-Border Cooperation Conference” in the northwestern province of Edirne.
“If the EU intends to stop the refugee flow from the Middle East, to stop deaths, to prevent the images that do not comply with civilization happening on the EU’s borders, and to stop terror infiltrating into Europe, it should get used to the idea of an equal partnership instead of a relationship based on dependency with Turkey,” he added.
The conference was also attended by Bulgarian Interior Minister Valentin Madev, Bulgarian Ambassador to Turkey Nadezhda Neynsky, EU Delegation to Turkey Ambassador Christian Berger, European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontext) Deputy Director Berndt Körner, and Edirne Governor Günay Özdemir.
Soylu said the current migration flow from Turkey to Europe is “mild” and if Ankara had taken fewer precautions then “everyone from Afghanistan to Africa, from Syria to Iraq would be trying to migrate to Europe.”
“It is because we are taking precautions that there is a stillness in the migrant flow from those place. We are only demanding that Europe, with all its values of civilization, stands with us and does this genuinely,” he added.
Bulgarian Minister Radev also took the stage during the conference, recognizing the support of Turkey regarding stopping migration flow into Europe.
“I listened to Soylu’s speech with attention and started to dream: If Turkey was in the EU and if the union consisted of 28 countries, it would very good indeed,” Radev said.