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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 15-11-29

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] PM Tsipras says confident EU-Turkey Summit will yield results on refugee flows
  • [02] EU's Tusk: 'Without control of external borders, Schengen will become history'
  • [03] Three out of 5 refugee 'hotspots' to be ready by end of 2015, says Migration minister

  • [01] PM Tsipras says confident EU-Turkey Summit will yield results on refugee flows

    Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras expressed confidence on Sunday that today's EU-Turkey Summit on the refugee crisis in Brussels will be constructive and that solutions will be found to tackle the flows.

    "Today the EU-Turkey summit is an important step in our efforts to tackle the refugee crisis effectively and in a humane way. Turkey is a candidate country of the EU, so we're looking forward to trying to reinforce this relation in the existing negotiating framework," he said speaking to journalists as he arrived for the meeting.

    He noted that the EU should make important steps in Turkey's accession process but also ensure that Turkish authorities will do "whatever they have to do" to decrease the flows of refugees and migrants because numbers of arrivals have become unmanageable.

    "We're in the most difficult position since WWII, this is the biggest refugee crisis Europe has ever faced, so we have to move forward rapidly and I'm confident that this summit is in the correct direction," he added. "I think that if we have the same purpose, to try to communicate and cooperate we can find a way."

    He also noted he visited Turkey last week where he held constructive talks with Prime Minister of Turkey Ahmet Davutoglu and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    [02] EU's Tusk: 'Without control of external borders, Schengen will become history'

    European Council President Donald Tusk warned on Sunday that if Europe doesn't protect its external borders effectively, the Schengen area will become history.

    "The most important one is the responsibility and duty to protect our external borders. We cannot outsource this obligation to any third country. I will repeat this again: without control on our external borders, Schengen will become history," the official said as he arrived for the EU-Turkey Summit on the refugee crisis in Brussels.

    He said the Summit's goal today is to stem the flow of migrants to Europe. "After many weeks of hard work and tough talks we have reached an agreement which I hope will be accepted today by all parties concerned," he said, adding that another aspect of the meeting is to "re-energize" relations with Turkey concerning its accession process.

    Wanting to note the importance of getting Turkey aboard on the issue, Tusk said: "Turkey is the key partner regarding countering terrorism; we need better cooperation when it comes to Syria and the Cyprus issue. Also recent days have also shown how important is the cooperation in geopolitical and strategic context."

    He noted however that the country is not the only key to solving the migration crisis.

    [03] Three out of 5 refugee 'hotspots' to be ready by end of 2015, says Migration minister

    Greece will have set up three out of the five temporary accommodation centers - the so-called "hotspots"- on the islands which bear the brunt of refugee and migrant flows by the end of the year, Alternate Minister for Migration Policy Yiannis Mouzalas said in an interview with newspaper Agora, published on Saturday.

    He also said that the government is also preparing 5,000 temporary positions for the relocation programme in northern Greece and Attica, while it will activate the rent subsidy program for 20,000 refugees.

    According to the paper, Mouzalas described as "feasible" the proposal for registering refugees in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon before relocating them to Europe.

    Commenting on the government's reaction to the refugee crisis, he was quoted as saying: "We were initially surprised and there was a difficulty in reaction to these vast flows … however our reactions in managing this crisis are continuously improving."


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