Erdogan threatens EU with open borders, refugee influx

Istanbul, Nov 25 (IANS) Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday threatened to open his country’s borders with the European Union to allow an influx of refugees into Europe.

Reacting to the European Parliament’s request on Thursday to suspend talks concerning Turkey’s accession to the EU, Erdogan warned he would open the shared borders to allow an influx of migrants into the continent, EFE news reported.

“We are feeding 3.5 million refugees in this country and you have broken your promises,” he said.

“When the dead children washed up on the Mediterranean shores you chose not to take care of them,” Erdogan said referring to the European Union.

He said the EU needed Turkey as a Middle East buttress, reiterating that 3.5 million refugees lived in his nation without any support from European authorities.

Turkey and the EU in March this year agreed that the former would accept the return of refugees that had travelled illegally from its shores to the nearby Greek islands.

In exchange, the EU said it would finance the care of the refugees in Turkey and promised to waive Turkish visa requirements into the EU, as long as certain conditions were met by Turkey.

To date, this waiver has not taken place because Turkey refuses to reform its draconian anti-terrorist legislation.