While the European Union delays payments to Turkey of the €3 billion it promised to help stem the flow of refugees, the country’s foreign minister upped the rhetoric and threatened Europe.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said, during a visit to a refugee camp in southeastern Turkey “If you [the EU and the international community in general] do not extend your hand to the refugees in Turkey or do not cooperate with Turkey, these people will come to you.”
Europe wants to see more progress from the Turkish side, while simultaneously arguing amongst themselves where the money will come from.
In a meeting with his German counterpart, Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos stated that there’s evidence that Turkish border agents are cooperating with smugglers.
Italy is hampering the delivery of the EU package to Turkey on technical grounds. Italian Finance Minister Pier Carlo Padoan wants the €3 billion to come from the EU budget, rather than being requested from member states.
Ankara wants the cash, according to the foreign minister’s comments.
In the meantime, refugee arrivals on Greek islands continue unabated and dead bodies continue to wash up on Greek beaches.