The So-called German-Turkish Secret Pact could be about 1.5 Million Migrants


A few days ago some European alternative press got excited about the « disclosing » to Hungarian parliament members on February 10, by prime minister Viktor Orbán, of a so-called secret pact between Germany and Turkey planning to transfer from Turkey, for distribution within the European Union, of 400,000 to 500,000 more Syrian refugees. 

It is not a scoop since the same Viktor Orbán had already declared on December 2 that he was expecting the announcement of this pact in a matter of days, although knowing that, as shown when the question was mentioned again on November 11 at the La Valette summit (and already at the difficult European Council of October 15), it would be poorly accepted.

It is not something new either. In its memo 15-5777, handed over by president Jean-Claude Juncker to president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on October 5 and published the next day, the European Commission had summarised the Action Plan prepared by a joint Turco-European commission after the informal European Council of September 23 (and maybe conceived since the dinner of May 17), and not disclosed so far, except for the clauses that have been included in the agreement of November 29. This memo, given to the chiefs of State as a short agenda for the European Council of October 15 and 16 (which would be disbanded in the evening of the 15 because of disputes), mentions some « EU resettlement schemes and programmes which could enable refugees in Turkey to enter the EU in an orderly manner ».

It is indeed not a German-Turkish agreement, even though Germany’s chancelor Angela Merkel, sent to Turkey on October 18 to negotiate in the name of the European Union, may have let president Erdoğan believe that this was again a German initiative, like the August 24 call to massive illegal intrusion, that French president François Hollande had precisely come to support in Berlin (rather than in Brussels).

The pact which is being commented upon currently has, unfortunately, nothing German, it is a clause of a Turkey -EU  agreement and the destination of the migrants (they are legally not refugees) that Turkey is supposed to provide is not Germany but the entire European Union, according to the distribution key negotiated in May, those famous quotas which were initially giving only 14,17% of the « illegal migrants » to France, who therefore insisted to get, in the end, 20% (Germany reserved 25%).

This agreement is not really a secret either. Lauriane Lizé-Galabbé had publicly denounced it on October 8, three days only after European presidents Jean-Claude Juncker (EU Commission), Donald Tusk (EU Council) and Martin Schultz (EU Parliament) had, in person, notified their acceptance to president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Stratediplo, which only comments open source information, mentioned it on October 16 (sommet de dupes), and noted on November 29, after the official signature of the agreement which did not specify any figures, that it was unclear « by how much had been raised the promise of installation in the European Union of the half-million migrants to be sent by Turkey » (victoire turque ou capitulation uniopéenne ?).

The figure given by prime minister Orbán is probably outdated. The details of this proposal were from before the Russian intervention in Syria and included giving Turkey a strip of territory in Northern Syria, as already promised by the United States on July 27. Nevertheless after the Russian intervention the European Union was not able any more to deliver this strip of Syrian territory and therefore Turkey asked for more in compensation.

Although until the end of September the European Union was considering offering to Turkey only one billion euros, the oral proposal of the three European presidents on October 5 was already up to three billion (to compensate for the impossibility to offer a piece of Syria) even though president Juncker claimed until the European Council of October 15 that he had only proposed one billion, and by the way his negotiator Merkel was forced, in Ankara on October 18, to accept the principle of a yearly renewal of these three billions (the agreement signed on November 29 would state an initial amout of three billions « subjet to reexamination »).

After the cold reception of this idea at the European Council of October 15, especially in the Višegrad group, the resistants like Viktor Orbán have probably not been kept informed of the progress of the negotiations with Turkey, and no figure was specified in the agreement signed on November 29.

But it is highly likely that the half-million « refugees from Syria » that the European Union wanted to propose, on October 5, to go get in Turkey, didn’t suffice either to compensate the impossibility to give Turkey a portion of Syria. Since the billion euros offered became three billions (yearly), it wouldn’t be surprising that the half-million « refugees » became a million and a half, which is more or less the number of real Syrians in Turkey (who will cease being refugees as soon as they pass in another country). Of course the certification of Syrian nationality relies on Turkey, since the European countries which severed all diplomatic contacts with Syria are unable to distinguish a real passport issued in Syria from a false one printed in Turkey.

Stratediplo  (draft translation from French)

Articles Par : Stratediplo

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