Minister of Foreign Affairs Lazar Comanescu stated on Thursday that solving the problems connected to migration requires a “very close” cooperation between the European Union and partner countries, with Turkey being is one of the key actors.
In a joint press conference with Turkish Minister of EU Affairs Volkan Bozkir, currently on a visit to Bucharest, Comanescu stated that migration was on the discussion agenda.
“We said it from the beginning – solving this problem requires a very close cooperation between the EU and partner countries, and Turkey is one of the key actors in this respect and the fact that a EU-Turkey action plan was agreed upon is a very important thing,” the head of Romanian diplomacy stated.
Moreover, according to Comanescu, Romania reaffirmed its “strong support” for Turkey’s bid to join the European Union.
“We welcomed the fact that lately there have been developments in measure to intensify the negotiation process by opening new negotiation chapters,” the minister stated.
Comanescu described the bilateral relations between the two states as “excellent” and added that Turkey is one of Romania’s main economic partners and its most important trading partner outside the EU.
The security situation in the region and cooperation at the Black Sea were other topics included on the agenda of the meeting.
In his turn, Volkan Bozkir stated that Romanian-Turkish relations can serve as an example for other regions.
“In these troubled years, in the situations we are facing, Turkey and Romania have never had difficulties in bilateral relations, were always together, looked in the same direction and supported each other in their views. I believe this is a very good example for other parts of the world” Bozkir stated.
Turkish Minister of EU Affairs Bozkir: Solution to Syrian problem sought; cooperation yielded results, more is needed
Turkish minister of EU Affairs Volkan Bozkir also stated Thursday that the cooperation scheme on migration has produced results and stressed that more must be done, including involving the international community, as the situation could worsen.
“It is a problem of the whole humanity. (…) If we fail to understand the cause of the problem, how we can solve it, what remedies we can find, to involve the entire international community, we will have a situation where today will be better than what comes next. (…) We must join our forces, reflect together, and Europe must also announce some refugee quotas so as to reduce the pressure. (…) What happens in Syria is actually the source of this illegal migration. (…) If we don’t solve it, we will have an even more difficult situation,” Bozkir stated at the headquarters of the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs during a joint press conference his Romanian counterpart Lazar Comanescu.
The Turkish official also stated that his country currently hosts 2,600,000 Syrian immigrants and reminded that this was not the first time Turkey was receiving refugees.
“In Turkey we have 2,600,000 guests from Syria. We were very happy to be able to provide them with shelter when they were so affected. It also happened in other occasions, in 1988, when Saddam Hussein bombed Aleppo. Then, 500,000 people came to Turkey and we took care of them for two years. In 1989, [Bulgarian] President [Todor] Zhivkov oppressed a part of Bulgarian citizens of Turkish origin; 250,000 people came to Turkey then and we provided them with a refuge as well. It is a pleasure, I believe, for Turkish citizens, that when the moment comes to help friends and neighbours, to do it. These people are our guests,” Bozkir stated.
He stressed that the 2,600,000 Syrian citizens are not economic migrants, adding that they have left their country to save their lives, threatened by terrorist attacks and bombings.
“We must find a solution to the Syrian problem so that these people stop coming to Turkey and in Europe and to find the possibility for them to remain there, to build houses so that they can return to their countries”, the minister stated.
According to the Turkish official, his country warned “more than two years ago” that the problem of migration should not be left only to Turkey, as “things will blow up.”
“Unfortunately, this is what happened. Now it became a problem for everyone. We are taking a lot of measures and there is now a cooperation scheme to solve this problem. (…) Cooperation gave results, but we must do more,” Volkan Bozkir stated.
M Ciolos: Turkey showing it can stop migrants, important to European leaders
Romania’s Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos on Thursday told Turkey’s Minister for EU Affairs and chief negotiator with the EU Volkan Bozkir that Turkey showing it can halt migration is important to European leaders, adding that the migration should be kept in check.
The Government reports in a press statement at his meeting with the Turkish officials, Ciolos discussed Turkey’s relationship with the EU, amidst the ongoing major challenge of migration and possible solutions, along with the bilateral ties between Romania and Turkey.
“To European leaders, Turkey showing it can halt migration is important. It is essential that the phenomenon is kept in check and only after that can we talk about how to manage the migrants that are already in Europe,” Ciolos is quoted as saying in the statement.
The statement also says that as far as the bilateral relations between Romania and Turkey are concerned, there are solid prospects for trade between the two countries to reach 10 billion US dollars in the near future.
“Turkey has a huge economic and geostrategic potential, also being Romania’s number one foreign trade partners outside the European Union,” says the Government.
“I discussed migration, Turkeys’ accession to EU, with Minister Bozkir”
Romania’s Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos on Thursday said that in his recent conversation with Turkey’s Minister of EU Affairs Volkan Bozkir the two discussed Turkeys’ accession to the European Union and migration.
“An interesting meeting with Turkey’s Minister of EU Affairs and chief negotiator for EU accession Volkan Bozkir. We discussed the prospects for Turkey’s accession to the European Union, as well as migration – major challenges that still need efficient solutions,” Ciolos said in a Facebook post.