No Agreement on Lifting Visas for Turkish Citizens by July – EP’s Schulz
There will be no agreement on visa free access to the European Union for Turkish citizens by July, the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz, has said.
The European Parliament wouldn’t begin consultations on lifting visa requirements for Turkish citizens because Turkey has yet to fulfil all conditions for visa-free travel in EU’s Schengen zone, DPA quoted Schulz as saying in an interview with German radio broadcaster Deutschlandfunk on Wednesday.
Schulz said that he had not passed the corresponding bill on to the responsible justice committee because as Turkey had not fulfilled five of 72 conditions to win visa waiver.
"It is not only a question of quantity, but quality, and as far as quality goes, two of the most essential prerequisites - data protection and anti-terrorism laws - have apparently not only not been fulfilled, but not even approached," Schulz said,according to DPA.
The perposal of the European Commission to give Turkey visa-free travel is part of an agreement between the EU leaders and Ankara that secures Ankara's cooperation in stemming the migrant inflow into Europe.
In return, Turkey must meet the remaining five of a total of 72 requirements to qualify for obtaining free travel. Most notably, Ankara must relax its controversial anti-terrorism legislation that has been used to target journalists and academics.
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