Turkey threatens to end migrant deal with EU amid spat

Turkey had agreed to work to keep migrants from crossing into the EU in return for funds to help it deal with some 3 million refugees.

16 March 2017 | 16:05

Source: Associated Press

  • Source: Associated Press
  • Last update: 16 March 2017 | 16:05

A picture taken on March 16, 2017 shows policemen standing guard near migrants at the Moria migrant camp on the island of Lesbos, almost a year after an EU-Turkey deal. (AFP Photo)

ANKARA, Turkey: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has threatened to scrap a deal with the European Union to readmit migrants who have crossed illegally into Europe, amid a standoff with European nations over their reluctance to allow Turkish ministers to hold campaign rallies in their countries.

In a televised speech Thursday, Erdogan said the EU could "forget about" a migrant deal first struck in 2013 and revived last year. Turkey had agreed to work to keep migrants from crossing into the EU in return for funds to help it deal with some 3 million refugees.

Erdogan accused the EU of not sticking with a promise to grant Turkish nationals the right to travel visa-free in Europe. He also sharply criticized a European court ruling in favor of curbs on wearing Islamic headscarves.

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