This analysis by Jonathan Eyal provides a good sense of the gravity of the refugee crisis in Europe and helped me to better appreciate why Chancellor Merkel warned that this treacherous predicament has the potential to cause the breakup of the European Union. Jonathan Eyal is one of the Straits Times’ finest journalists and analysts – his work is well worth your time to read.
Jonathan Eyal, Europe Correspondent
The Straits Times
Published Mar 10, 2016
Separate arrangement made with Turkey to avoid drubbing in regional polls: Observers
German Chancellor Angela Merkel is struggling to gain European acceptance for a deal she brokered with Turkey to stop refugees from washing up on Europe’s shores.
But the agreement, which she single-handedly negotiated earlier this week with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, could well be torn apart by other European leaders even before it has any chance of being implemented.
Turkey’s cooperation is essential, since the country is the conduit to a majority of the 1.1 million refugees who entered Europe last year, as well as the approximately 130,000 additional migrants who sought asylum during the first two months of this year. But there are sharp disagreements over the price Europe should pay for Turkey’s assistance.
Under an initial deal painstakingly negotiated by officials headed by European Union president Donald Tusk, Turkey would have been offered €3 billion (S$4.6 billion) to seal its borders. Turkey was also promised eventual visa-free travel for its own citizens, and a resumption of negotiations for full EU membership
Read more here.
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