BRUSSELS (AA) – European Commission First Vice-President Frans Timmermans said he had a “constructive and productive meeting” on Friday with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and EU Affairs Minister Omer Celik.
On his Twitter account, Timmermans said, “Constructive and productive meeting with Turkish Foreign Minister Çavuşoğlu and EU Affairs Minister Çelik.” And added,
“Joint determination to overcome last remaining obstacles to visa lib[eralization]. Technical team to travel to Ankara already next week to work on this.”
The EU-Turkey deal aims to discourage irregular migration through the Aegean Sea by taking stricter measures against human smugglers and improving the conditions of Syrian refugees in Turkey.
It also stipulated the acceleration of Turkey’s EU membership bid and visa-free travel (liberalization) for Turkish nationals within the Schengen area, on the condition that Ankara meets 72 requirements set by the EU.
Ankara has met most of the requirements, but the EU’s demands for change in Turkey’s anti-terrorism law have led to a pause in negotiations.