International Relations

Majority of Germans want EU to halt Turkey membership talks & scrap migrant deal

TWO-THIRDS of Germans want the European Union to break off membership talks with Turkey, a poll has revealed.


A majority in Angela Merkel’s Germany want the EU to end talks with Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan

In an Emnid survey for the country’s largest-selling Sunday newspaper, Bild am Sonntag, 66 per cent believed accession talks between Brussels and Ankara should end.In a major rejection of EU policy within the bloc’s most influential member state, the poll also revealed more than half (52 per cent) were in favour of Brussels’ controversial migrant deal being binned.

Panicking at how to respond to the unprecedented migration crisis across Europe, earlier this year the EU rushed through a ‘one in, one out’ deal with Turkey.The EU agreed to take in one Syrian refugee for every ‘irregular migrant’ returned to Turkey who had arrived by sea in Greece but were denied asylum.

But Brussels was accused of allowing itself to be ‘blackmailed’ by Ankara over its pledge to hand over billions of pounds in aid, grant Turkey’s 77million population visa-free travel across mainland Europe and fasttrack the country’s EU membership.

Charities also blasted the EU’s ‘inhumane and illegal’ deal and hit out at its shambolic implementation.

The agreement has sharply cut the number of refugees entering Europe via eastern routes, but only 35 per cent of the 502 people surveyed wanted it to continue.

More than half (52 per cent) were in favour of the EU’s controversial migrant deal being binned

More than two-thirds of those asked last week also wanted an immediate freeze of EU aid payments to Turkey.Visa-free travel across the EU’s Schengen area had been promised to Turkey by June, but it has been delayed after the European Commission ruled Ankara had failed to meet some of the agreement’s conditions.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said last weekend his country would back out of the migrant deal with the EU if Brussels did not deliver on its visa-free pledge.

But German chancellor Angela Merkel’s chief of staff, Peter Altmaier, has said there was “no Plan B” for the migrant deal and insisted he was convinced it would remain in place.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier has also said he hopes to restore direct talks with Ankara amid the country’s upheaval.

There has been growing concern within Europe over the EU’s relationship with Turkey, following the country’s brutal crackdown on those accused of plotting last month’s failed coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an.

Austria’s foreign minister Sebastian Kurz has vowed to veto any further talks over Turkey’s EU membership.

Last week, the country’s chancellor Christian Kern called for an end to Turkey’s accession talks.He said the country is “moving away from Europe” and that “what happens there isn’t compatible with European fundamental values”.

The British Embassy in Ankara has a team dedicated to helping Turkey’s prospects of joining the EU, despite former prime minister David Cameron insisting the country was unlikely to join the bloc before the “year 3,000” ahead of the EU referendum.

Just a week after the Brexit vote on June 23, the EU opened a further chapter of accession negotiations with Ankara.

Leave a Reply

Help put the World to rights and leave a Comment

Notify of
Powered by: Wordpress
%d bloggers like this: