EYEAFRICA TV: Brussel, BELGIUM: Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has met European Union officials on the sidelines of a NATO summit currently underway in Brussels.
He held a meeting with European Council President Donald Tusk and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker focusing on current Turkey-EU relations.
The three leaders agreed that the refugee deal between Turkey and the EU signed in March 2016 must be fully implemented. They also discussed Turkey-EU relations and counterterrorism.
In March 2016 Turkey and the EU signed a deal which aimed at discouraging irregular migration through the Aegean Sea by taking stricter measures against human traffickers and improving the conditions of the nearly three million Syrian refugees in Turkey.
That deal also allowed for the acceleration of Turkey’s EU membership bid and visa-free travel for Turkish nationals within the EU’s Schengen zone.
Later, the Turkish leader later met European Parliament President Antonio Tajani.
President Erdoğan also held a closed door meeting with the newly elected French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday.
According to presidential sources, the meeting between the two leaders covering bilateral political and economic relations passed in a positive manner. Both leaders agreed on cooperation in the defense industry and increasing the the bilateral trade volume between Turkey and France to 20 billion euros, which was 13.4 billion euros in 2015.
By: Salim Saidy
eyeafrica Europe and Middle East Correspondent