Turkey, EU ‘must and will continue to cooperate’: EU official

Meetings between Erdogan, EU officials during NATO summit held in constructive atmosphere: European Commission chief

European Commission chief spokesman Margaritis Schinas on Monday called for continued cooperation between Turkey and the European Union, according to Anadolu Agency.

Speaking at a news conference in Brussels, Schinas said: “The EU and Turkey must and will continue to cooperate.”

His remarks came after last week’s summit of NATO leaders in Brussels during which President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, EU Council President Donald Tusk and European Parliament President Antonio Tajani.

Schinas said the meetings between Erdogan and EU officials were held in a constructive atmosphere.

Under the EU-Turkey readmission agreement signed this March, Turkey is supposed to readmit all irregular asylum seekers who reach Greek islands from the country.

But visa liberalization in Schengen zone countries was one of the key EU promises made under the deal, which was meant to enhance EU-Turkey cooperation in addressing the refugee crisis and accelerate Turkey’s membership talks.

Turkey has so far met most of the requirements for visa liberalization, but the EU’s demands for change in Ankara’s anti-terrorism laws led to a deadlock in negotiations.

Turkish authorities previously said the refugee deal could collapse if the EU fails to provide Turkey with the promised visa liberalization by the end of this year.