President Erdoğan to visit Brussels, discuss PKK and refugees

DAILY SABAH
ISTANBUL
Published 14.09.2015 20:43

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will pay a visit to the European capital of Brussels on Oct. 4 where he will meet with European Parliament President Martin Schulz, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and EU Council President Herman Van Rompuy to touch upon issues including PKK terror and the refugee crisis affecting Turkey and Europe.

President Erdoğan is expected to give precedence to long-awaited European co-operation in EU countries where the terrorist organization is dominant. Ankara has so far experienced contradicting actions and remarks coming from the EU regarding the PKK. Whereas the EU, from time to time, offered collective help in the fight against terror, some countries have refused to extradite arrested PKK terrorists.

Another issue of utmost importance to Ankara is the refugee crisis. Home to more than 2 million refugees, Turkey has been the primary country by far in bearing the refugee burden, spending over $6 billion. President Erdoğan will reportedly convince the EU to include Turkey in the refugee quota solution.

The European Council President Donald Tusk held a meeting with President Erdoğan on Wednesday, where he commented on several issues from PKK terrorist presence in EU countries to the refugee crisis in Europe.

Emphasizing that the European Union wants to cooperate closely with Turkey against terrorism, Tusk said that the EU will continue to be committed to fighting the PKK's presence in Europe. "The cease-fire in 2013 between Turkey and the PKK was received with hope and relief by all EU countries. We continue to believe that this was the right choice; in fact there is no reasonable alternative," Tusk said.

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