Amid Stalemate Over Greece-Turkey Border Crisis, EU Takes In Migrant Children

As thousands of migrants continue to mass on the Turkey-Greece border, there were few signs of a breakthrough in emergency talks between Turkey and the European Union Monday.  Meanwhile five EU member states, Germany, Finland, France, Luxembourg and Portugal, agreed to take in unaccompanied migrant children who are stuck in Greece, though the numbers are unclear.Ankara encouraged migrants to head to the Greek border last week, accusing the EU of failing to keep to the promises it made in a 2016 deal struck at the height of the European refugee crisis. Turkey is hosting around 4 million migrants, many of them escaping the war in Syria. However, critics say most of those trying to cross into Greece are not from Syria and accuse Turkey of weaponizing migrants to blackmail Europe.  Sorry, but your browser cannot support embedded video of this type, you can
A child walks next to tents in a migrant camp set up near the Turkish-Greek border in Pazarkule, Edirne region, Turkey, March 10, 2020.For migrants stuck on the border, including thousands of children, the misery continues. Many are sleeping in the open or in makeshift camps. Greece has stepped up security across the land and sea borders and anyone caught trying to breach the frontier is turned back.  A few do manage to get through and are quickly arrested. It’s not yet clear if they will be returned to Turkey or be allowed to remain on Greek soil, after Athens announced it will not accept any asylum applications for at least the next month.    Back home, Turkey’s president continues to ramp up the rhetoric for his domestic audience.Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan meets with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, left, in Brussels, Belgium, March 9, 2020.“Aren’t women and their children suffering the most among the refugees swarming to land and sea borders, hoping to go to Europe?” President Erdogan told supporters at a rally Sunday in Istanbul. “And what is the West doing about this? Is the West’s heart breaking over all of this? No. Is it raising its voice? No.”Meanwhile the United Nations has voiced concern over the vulnerability of the migrant population to the COVID-19 virus outbreak. A team from the U.N. refugee agency is visiting camps along the Greek border to advise on hygiene and transmission prevention.