The European Commission has worked out an action plan with Turkey to stem the flow of refugees to Europe, a German newspaper cited sources in the Commission and the German government as saying on Sunday.
Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung said that according to the plan, Turkey would be obliged to better protect its border with Greece – a frontier that many migrants have crossed on perilous boat journeys.
It said the Turkish and Greek coastguards would work together to patrol the eastern Aegean, coordinated by Frontex, the European Union’s border control agency, and send all refugees back to Turkey.
In Turkey, six new refugee camps for up to two million people which would be set up, partly financed by the EU, the newspaper said.
The EU states would commit to taking some of the refugees so that up to half a million people could be relocated to Europe without having to use traffickers or take the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean, the newspaper said.
It said the Commission and representatives had agreed on this plan last week and that European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker also coordinated on this with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan is due to meet with Juncker on Monday.
A spokesman for the European Commission said the meeting was “precisely about seeing how to step up cooperation to jointly tackle the refugee crisis” and said any new announcements would be made at a news conference on Monday.
Asked about the newspaper report, a spokeswoman for the German government said Merkel, Juncker and Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann had held a phone call on Wednesday but she declined to comment on the content of their discussion.