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FM spokesman praises EU-Turkey migrant readmission agreement

Δημοσίευση 29 Ιανουαρίου 2011, 12:56 / Ανανεώθηκε 27 Ιουνίου 2013, 14:55
FM spokesman praises EU-Turkey migrant readmission agreement
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A Greek foreign ministry spokesman on Friday said a new migrant readmission protocol between the European Union and Turkey this week covers all of the Union's external borders.

A Greek foreign ministry spokesman on Friday said a new migrant readmission protocol between the European Union and Turkey this week covers all of the Union's external borders.

Moreover, spokesman Grigoris Delavekouras said Greece attributes increased significance to the agreement, adding that the Greek government hopes it will be implemented in full. He added that the agreement also confirms the "massive problems" faced by Greece vis-à-vis the problem of illegal immigration from Third World migrants, with most of the flow now using neighbouring Turkey as the main transit country.

Asked about the issue of a three-year transitional period during which only Turkish nationals that enter the Union illegally will be repatriated, Delavekouras said a Greek demand to include a clause stating that bilateral readmission agreements must also be honored was included in the same article.

"This was a very important development that we achieved, because implementation of the bilateral protocol for repatriation now comprises part of the agreement with the entire European Union," he said, adding:

"For Greece, during the transitional period and based on the bilateral pact with Turkey, the procedure for readmission will be applied in all instances, regardless (of an illegal immigrant's) nationality."

Queried on whether the agreement deals only individuals intercepted on the borders with Turkey, Delavekouras said this was not accurate.
"... the field of implementation of the agreement extends throughout the breadth of the EU's external borders, regardless of whether these borders are with Turkey. Thismeans that the procedure for repatriation is foreseen even on our borders in the Ionian Sea or on the borders of France or Italy."

The spokesman said the current bilateral agreement with Turkey -- the initial and ground-breaking protocol was signed in November 2001 -- will be in force throughout the transitional period and under the supervision of the EU, replaced after three years with the EU-Turkey agreement.

Delavekouras also cited the two-speed system of repatriation, an accelerated version and one followed for illegals found residing far from border areas.