18 March 2020
Turkey is reportedly seeking more money from the European Union to prevent the departure of refugees heading across the borders with Greece and Bulgaria.
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"Turkey has pressed European leaders to make fresh cash pledges to prevent tens of thousands of refugees from leaving the country and trying to reach Europe amid a Russian-Syrian offensive in north-west Syria.
After intense bombardment in Idlib province last month, Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, encouraged thousands of refugees in the country to move on towards the Greek islands and the Baltics, in a repeat of the surge to Europe in 2015.
That push ended when the EU gave Turkey €6bn to house the refugees in Turkey. Nearly €4.7bn has been contractually awarded, but only about €3.2bn paid out.
In a phone call on Tuesday between the French president, Emmanuel Macron, the British prime minister, Boris Johnson, the German chancellor, Angela Merkel, and Erdogan, the leaders discussed the possibility of a new refugee deal, ways to combat the continued Russian threat in Idlib, and the fear that coronavirus could sweep through the refugee camps bordering Syria in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan."
Erdogan in talks with European leaders over refugee cash for Turkey (The Guardian, link)
Open access book: Europe and the Refugee Response: A Crisis of Values?
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