TURKEY

Migrants Panic Over Crackdown Aimed At Curbing Refugee Crisis

Turkey made a deal with the European Union this week to stem the flow of migrants trying to reach western Europe

Dec 01, 2015 at 9:17 AM ET

A $3 billion deal that aims to curb the refugee crisis has sparked a wave of panic and confusion among many who say they are considering making a treacherous trek to western Europe.

The deal, which Turkey and the European Union reached on Sunday, stipulates that in exchange for cracking down on people smuggling and tightening its border controls, Turkey will receive $3 billion from the EU and a chance at renewed talks to join the European Union. The idea is to stop migrants from leaving Turkey and going to Greece, where they head toward countries such as Austria and Germany.

After the deal was reached, hundreds of members in a Facebook group that is popular among migrants and asylum seekers—primarily Syrians—posted questions about how the deal affects them and their plans to go to western Europe. Many asked if—and when—European borders will be closed to migrants.

More Migrants Sew Their Mouths Shut In Protest

“Good evening guys, I have an urgent question,” said a Facebook user, Reem Orabi, from Damascus. “Is it true that in a few months the EU will send all the refugees back to Turkey?”

Many others asked about the level of security on the Turkish border, apparently in attempts to know if they should try to pass through Turkey to the EU now, before it becomes too difficult. “Guys, if I want to cross the Turkish border now, what is the situation there at the moment?” Abu Alhijaa from Damascus asked. Most responses indicated that Turkish border security is tightening, but many also said that it’s still possible to cross the border.

Hours after signing a deal with the EU, Turkey on Monday arrested 1,300 refugees—including three people smugglers and hundreds of Syrians, Afghans, Iranians and Iraqis, The Guardian reported. Turkish authorities have said they were headed for Greece.

Translation: Is it true that Europe will close its doors for refugees soon, if you guys have any idea please share this with us

Translation: The Turkish European deal came into effect
Even the Syrian dreams for asylum were taken from us
To enter the EU, Turkey will close its border to us
The reason is because ISIS scares Europe, and we carry the ISIS stereotype

Translation: Guys, please help us. We were told that (people) smuggling was shut down (at the Turkish border). I want to go on Thursday – please help me to verify the authenticity of this rumor.