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EU Agrees to Boost Coordination With Turkey on Managing Refugee Flows

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The European Union and Turkey agreed to increase coordination to tackle the issues related to migration, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said Monday.

Flags of Turkey, right, and the European Union are seen in front of a mosque in Istanbul, Turkey - Sputnik International
Turkey Must Pass Personal Data Protection Law to Get Visa-Free EU Entry
BRUSSELS (Sputnik) In November, the European Union and Turkey approved a joint plan to counter excessive migration into the bloc, under which EU member states will give some 3 billion euros ($3.2 billion) to Ankara and fast track negotiations for its accession to the European Union. The introduction of a visa-free regime with Turkey in fall 2016 is dependent on Ankara limiting the ongoing high migration levels from Syria into the bloc.

"The key point for us is that the action plan on migration and refugees that we agreed upon at the end of last year is fully implemented. On the European Union’s side this means that we have to better support Turkey in the incredible work it’s doing to host and protect an enormous number of refugees," Mogherini said during a press conference.

The official noted that from the Turkish side it meant help in managing the migration flow in the European Union.

"We agreed to strengthen [our] constant work in this respect so that our actions are coordinated, consistent coherent, at what we have agreed upon," Mogherini said.

Europe is struggling to find a solution to a massive refugee crisis. Frontex, the EU's external border agency, detected over 1.83 million illegal border crossings in 2015, compared to some 283,500 in 2014. Turkey is a key transit country for hundreds of thousands of refugees fleeing conflicts in Syria and elsewhere in the Middle East.

According to the UN refugee agency, more than 2.5 million refugees from war-torn Syria are temporarily living in Turkey. The European Union is attempting to prevent them traveling to the bloc by supporting Turkey to provide decent living conditions for the refugees on its soil.

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