Greece to Extend border fence by 80 kilometres


Greece has announced its plans to extend its border fence with Turkey by 80 kilometres.

The existing 35-kilometer border fence is to be extended by 80 kilometers, Migration Minister Notis Mitarakis told the Skai radio station on Sunday. This would secure all regions that could otherwise be crossed on foot.

The announcement comes amid high tensions between Athens and Ankara.

The two NATO members are at loggerheads over natural gas, territories and many other issues.

Most recently, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan declared that Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis no longer exists to him, thus ruling out the possibility of talks.

Speaking in a televised address following a Cabinet meeting, Erdoğan said Mitsotakis spoke against Turkey and urged the U.S. Congress not to allow F-16 fighter jets to be sold to Ankara.

Eu Turkey deal details

What is the EU-Turkey deal?

The ‘EU-Turkey deal’ is the term often used to describe the ‘statement of cooperation’ between EU states and the Turkish Government, which was signed in March 2016.

It agreed on three key points:

  • Turkey would take any measures necessary to stop people travelling irregularly from Turkey to the Greek islands.
  • Anyone who arrived on the islands irregularly from Turkey could be returned there.
  • For every Syrian returned from the islands, EU Member States would accept one Syrian refugee who had waited inside Turkey.

In exchange, Turkey would receive €6 billion to improve the humanitarian situation faced by refugees in the country, and Turkish nationals would be granted visa-free travel to Europe. 

The message was clear: those attempting to reach Greece irregularly would be swiftly returned, while those who waited patiently in Turkey would have the chance to enter in their place.