EU-Turkey statement of March 2016 related to the refugee crisis still in force
The Turkish Foreign minister, Mevlut Cavusοglu announced that his country is freezing the bilateral deal that had been signed between Turkey and Greece in 2001 about the re-admittion of migrants while Ankara keeps respecting the EU-Turkey refugee statement of 2016. Turkey’s decision comes after the release of the 8 servicemen in Greece -where they had fled after the 2016 attempted coup- with a Greek court ruling, at the same time that Ankara considers them coup plotters.
“We cannot accept what Greece did. Greece has gone through a lot because of coups and we can see that the Greek government wants to solve the problem. On the other hand, we realise it is being substantially pressurised by the West, especially Greek Justice. They (Greece) say that Justice is independent. However, we know very well that they are under pressure indeed. What is it we did? Well, apart from the bilateral agreement concerning migrants who reach the five islands, there is also another agreement between us, and that is the one we decided to freeze. The decision about the 8 officers led us to act accordingly but our effort to convince Greece to extradite them to Turkey is not over.”
The 2001 Greece-Turkey deal on migrant re-admittion is completely irrelevant to the EU-Turkey statement of 2016. Nearly 5 000 migrants have been re-admitted to Turkey between the years 2001 and 2018, thanks to the aforementioned bilateral agreement…. / IBNA