EU plan to open up visa-free travel with Turkey ‘reaches final stages’

 

Dimitris Avramopoulos has confirmed: “We are working towards a common goal with Turkey and we want to give visa-free travel to the Turkish citizens with a biometric passport in a short period of time.

“I am now in the last level…we work closely with Turkey, in close working relationship and trying to fulfill all the necessary needs. When the stay of the visions takes place, it will make people more contact and strengthen our partnership.”

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EU reaches deal to grant visa-free travel to 50 million people

The former Soviet republics are seeking to move further away from their former master Moscow

The EU has reached an agreement to grant visa-free travel to 50 million Ukrainians and Georgians.

Officials said the deal had been struck on Thursday to end an internal EU dispute that had been holding up the promised measures.

Late-night talks involving EU member states and the European Parliament had reached a compromise on the terms of a mechanism which can be used to suspend the visa-free schemes in emergencies. Continue reading

Erdogan Set to Flood Europe With Millions of Migrants as EU Refugee Deal Falters

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© AP Photo/ Tolga Bozoglu

 

The European Commission is set to release a report finding that Turkey’s human rights practices failed to comply with the terms of the deal – a finding that would end all hope of Turkish citizens receiving visa-free travel and likely forcing Erdogan to open the floodgates.

The Erdogan government became enraged after a senior European official claimed that Turkey is not committed to doing what is necessary to join the 28-nation bloc and that its residents should be denied visa-free travel within the EU as was initially agreed upon by the two parties. The spat between Turkish officials and the European Union comes at a time when Europe desperately needs to preserve the migrant deal. Continue reading

Turkey Resorts To Blackmail, Warns Europe It Will Unleash Refugees If No Visa-Free Travel

Following months of monetary and diplomatic appeasement of Erdogan, which culminated with a migration deal according to which Turkey would hold Syrian refugees within its borders instead of allowing them to continue onward to Central Europe, things promptly fell apart. As a reminder, less than a month ago, a high-ranking deputy for Turkey’s ruling AKP party, Burhan Kuzu (also a former adviser to President Erdogan) issued an explicit threat to Europe which was at that time discussing whether or not to grant Turkey visa-free travel within the continent. Specifically, he tweeted that “The European Parliament will discuss the report that will open Europe visa-free for Turkish citizens. If the wrong decision is taken, we will unleash  the refugees!.” Many read that as tacit blackmail. Continue reading