The EU Commission on Wednesday urged EU member states and MEPs to back a deal granting visa-free access to the Schengen area for Turkish citizens, so long as Turkey meets 72 conditions—but Finnish MEPs are less than keen, according to an Yle poll.

 

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and German chancellor Angela Merkel agreed a deal to try and stem the flow of refugees into the EU
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and German chancellor Angela Merkel agreed a deal to try and stem the flow of refugees into the EU

 

The agreement was struck between the EU and Turkey to try and halt migrant flows from Turkey to Greece, and implement a mechanism to deport migrants from Greece back to Turkey if they do not claim asylum.

 

As a quid pro quo Turkey asked for a relaxed regime for its citizens, but EU governments and MEPs must back the deal. Of 13 Finnish MEPs just three say they favour lifting the visa requirement, seven are opposed and a further three remain on the fence.

 

Some based their opposition on Turkey’s failure to meet all 72 conditions, but the Commission said on Wednesday that all but five have been met—and those remaining five are expected to be met soon.

 

The three MEPs positive on the deal were from the Centre, SDP and National Coalition parties—but all three had party colleagues opposing the agreement. Both Finns Party members were against the agreement, while the Left Alliance and Swedish People’s Party MEPs did not give a view one way or the other. The Green League MEP said that she opposed the agreement as Turkey had not yet met the conditions.

 

 

 

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