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Erdogan Vows to Let Refugees Into EU if Brussels Continues Anti-Turkey Policy

© AP Photo / Vadim GhirdaTurkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan - Sputnik International
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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened on Friday to open the country's borders for refugees to cross into Europe if the European Union continued its anti-Turkey policies.

ANKARA (Sputnik) — European lawmakers voted on Thursday in favor of freezing European Union accession talks with Turkey until it lifts restrictive measures in place since the July failed coup.

"We accept 3 million refugees and you start groaning when 50,000 people attempt to enter [into the EU]. Listen, if you go further, you should know that these border crossings will be opened," Erdogan said in remarks broadcast at a women's congress in Istanbul.

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim at the Cankaya Palace in Ankara (File) - Sputnik International
Ankara Expects EU Leaders to Denounce Anti-Turkish Resolution
Ankara and Brussels agreed on a deal in March, under which Turkey pledged to take back all undocumented migrants who arrive in the European Union through its territory in exchange for Syrian refugees accommodated in Turkey, on a one-for-one basis.

Turkey signed an association agreement with the then-European Community in 1963, and submitted a membership application in 1987. Talks about Ankara's membership of the European Union began in 2005. The negotiations on Turkey's EU membership have been repeatedly suspended due to the Cyprus dispute and Turkey's record of denying press freedom, among other obstacles.

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