Collage European press round up: What to expect from EU-Turkey summit?

With thousands of migrants stuck in Greece and the next EU-Turkey summit this upcoming Monday, March 7, the migrant crisis stayed on top of the news in Europe. There was even speculation about new paths some refugees heading to Europe are trying out.

On Wednesday (March 2), the EU launched a new refugee emergency support plan of 700 million euros to provide relief mainly to Greece, where roughly 2,000 refugees arrive every day.

These additional funds can only solve the problems related to migrants coming to Europe in the short term, Christof Haverkamp noted in the German newspaper Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung. Like the German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the journalist pleads for a European solution and calls on leaders to take joint responsibility for refugees at their meeting next Monday.

The Italian newspaper Il sole 24 ore underlined that the 700 million of the aid plan won’t go the Greek government only, but also to the United Nations and non-governmental organisations (NGO) working on the ground to meet emergency needs.

“Turkey’s role is crucial for all Europe towards the issue,” the Greek author Angel Stagkos wrote in the Greek newspaper “Kathimerini”.

He expects Brussels to try, with all its power, to reach an agreement with Turkey at this meeting, whereas the final decisions of the 28 EU member states will then have to be taken ten days later at the regular EU summit on March 17-18.

Press conference by Christos Stylianides on emergency plan for Greece on March 3, 2016 / ec.europa.eu

Commissioner Stylianides presenting new refugee emergency support plan

Influence of refugee crisis on UK’s Brexit referendum

Ahead of the EU-Turkey summit, Wolfgang Münchau, the Financial Times‘ economics editor-in-chief, warned in the Portuguese newspaper “Diário de Notícias”, that “the refugee crisis, as being out of control, can dictate the result in the British referendum and that the EU will not be able to handle two simultaneous crises of such dimension.”

Schengen solution plan

The European Commission is willing to tighten security at Europe’s outer borders and is preparing a roadmap to the rescue of Schengen.

However, the EU Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc warned that the increased controls at the Schengen borders will cost the transport sector billions of euros.

The Slovenian broadcaster RTV SLO portrayed the Schengen countries, including Slovenia, that have already reintroduced border controls.

Crossing the border between Denmark and Germany per hitchhiker in 2009 / Flickr / Ingolf / CC BY-NC 2.0

No more passport-free crossing to Denmark, among others

Russia: Refugees’ new path

Refugees are starting to head to Europe via a new path through Russia, which may directly affect not just Norway and Finland, but also neighboring EU states like Estonia and Latvia, the Estonian member of the European Parliament (MEP) of the Liberals, Urmas Paet, said in an interview with the Estonian public broadcasting ERR (in English).

Paet explained that “the path through Russia is much safer than the other routes that have been mostly used until now, as it does not involve crossing the Mediterranean Sea.”

Silent screams of refugees

“Help us, it’s cold. We are not terrorists.” “I seek freedom in Europe.” These are some of the messages written on canvasses, pieces of cardboard or sheets that show the desperation at the borders of the Balkans, Greece and France, reported Spanish newspaper El Mundo with a photo report.

‘Bulgaria, punchbag of Brussels’

This catchy phrase is the title of an opinion article of the Bulgarian public radio BNR regarding the European Commission’s critical annual report on the state.

After the EU executive last month pointed out the problem of corruption in Bulgaria’s justice and home affairs, it is now “the turn of the Bulgarian economy to come under Brussels’ fire.”

According to BNR, the Commission reported “not even a single good word for Bulgaria” in its annual analysis of economic and social challenges in EU member states.

Pierre Moscovici presenting winter economic forecast 2016 on February 4, 2016 / ec.europa.eu

Pierre Moscovici last month presenting the winter economic forecast 2016

Ukraine to stay pro-EU

Ukraine will not give up pro-EU reforms, according to Volodymyr Groysman, chair of the Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian parliament).

During an interview with Polskie Radio, he said that the current government crisis in Kiev will not change the pro-European course, regardless of when the new coalition and a new government will be established.

EU-US data privacy shield

The EU and the US last month worked out a new framework for an agreement on the transatlantic data transfers between the two blocs, called “EU-US Privacy Shield”.

The framework, however, does not guarantee that there will be no mass surveillance from the US or that the privacy of European citizens will not be intruded, Adrienne Charmet, a member of a French NGO “La Quadrature du Net”, told Belgian public broadcaster RTBF.

  • This press review was compiled with the support of the Euranet Plus members Castilla y Leon es Radio (Spain), RTBF (Belgium), Polskie Radio (Poland), RTV SLO (Slovenia), ams (Germany), BNR (Bulgaria), Rádio Renascença (Portugal), Sky Media (Estonia), Skaï Radio (Greece) and Radio 24 II Sole (Italy).
  • Author: Laeticia Markakis, Euranet Plus News Agency
  • Further image credits: (middle 1) Collage European press round up: What to expect from EU-Turkey summit? / EPNA, Brussels | (middle 2) Press conference by Christos Stylianides on emergency plan for Greece on March 3, 2016 / ec.europa.eu / EPNA, Brussels | (middle 3) Crossing the border between Denmark and Germany per hitchhiker in 2009 / Flickr / Ingolf / EPNA, Brussels / CC BY-NC 2.0 | (middle 4) Pierre Moscovici presenting winter economic forecast 2016 on February 4, 2016 / ec.europa.eu

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