Talks take place as migrant crisis shows no sign of easing

Talks take place as migrant crisis shows no sign of easing

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The head of the European Council is meeting with Turkey’s Prime Minister and President today, as the migrant crisis shows no sign of easing.

The talks come as figures show record numbers crossed Europe’s borders last year.
Over 1.2 million people made initial applications for asylum to the European Union last year – more than twice the figure for 2014.

Eurostat has said Syrians were the largest group – followed by people from Afghanistan and Iraq.

Babar Baloch – from the UN’s refugee agency – has said there needs to be a comprehensive solution to the migration crisis: “There is a lot of talk in terms of the highest level, but we haven’t seen an EU mechanism that can be put in place that is very much needed to get out of this situation.”

There are fears of a humanitarian crisis on the Greece – Macedonia border, where thousands stuck at a makeshift camp.

European Correspondent for The Irish Examiner, Ann Cahill, has said the EU’s Schengen passport-free system has collapsed: “Whatever country a migrant comes into first, is where they are supposed to be identified, fingerprinted and decision taken if they have made an appeal for asylum.

“That of course isn’t happening because they just don’t want that number of people, so they have been waving them on.”

An EU summit with Turkey takes place on Monday to discuss how to protect the Bloc’s borders.
Ahead of that, EU president Donald Tusk is meeting with the country’s president and prime minister in Istanbul.

Tusk has pulled no punches during his trip to the region, yesterday warning migrants against trying to enter Europe: “Migrants, wherever you are from, do not come to Europe.”

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