Turkey prepares for new border security organization

Turkey prepares for new border security organization

Turkey prepares for new border security organization

AA Photo

Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has announced Turkey has preparations underway to form a new professional border security enforcement organization that will assume various responsibilities in regards to providing security at the country’s borders.

In response to a written motion filed by main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), Davutoğlu first recalled that Turkey had accepted the 1951 Geneva Convention relating to the Status of Refugees with a “geographical limitations.” Accordingly, it limited the right to receive refugee status only to asylum seekers fleeing “events in Europe.” Refugees from outside of Europe are only granted a temporary stay in Turkey, pending their resettlement to third countries.

Thus, it is not possible for Syrians who have taken shelter in Turkey to obtain refugee status, Davutoğlu said, the Anadolu Agency reported on May 29. Still, Turkey has been implementing an “open door policy” for Syrians who flee from violence in their country, he added.

“Our Interior Ministry is conducting studies to form a new, professional border enforcement organization; on one hand, to increase cooperation and coordination among institutions in charge of border control and surveillance, and on the other, to be responsible for the protection of our borders and passengers’ entry and exit,” Davutoğlu said, noting the Interior Ministry is currently working on a draft bill for the establishment of a new “Border Security Organization.”

Davutoğlu’s response to Sezgin Tanrıkulu was delayed according to parliamentary procedures. Tanrıkulu filed the motion concerning the EU-Turkey Readmission Agreement and border police practices on Dec. 18, 2013, two days after the readmission agreement was signed.

“It is out of the question for elements of the EU’s border security agency, Frontex, to conduct any operational activities on Turkey’s territory. The Interior Ministry has no plans to build security walls at the borders with Iraq, Iran, Bulgaria or Greece,” Davutoğlu also said.