Sibylline Insight Series

Turkey’s opening of the border to migrants will drive policy risk and disruption across Europe

March 12, 2020

On 28 February, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan relaxed Turkey's border controls with EU member states Greece and Bulgaria, paving the way for large numbers of migrants and refugees to journey to Europe. Escalating conflict levels in Syria between Turkey and Russia-backed Syrian government forces have raised concerns of a repeat of the 2015 European migrant crisis, with policy uncertainty likely over the coming months.

 Key points include:

  • Turkish policy driven by domestic pressures as well as escalating conflict levels in Syria
  • Likely disruption for supply chains and travel due to enhanced border controls
  • EU remains divided on approach to Turkish policy and ways to mitigate migration crisis
 

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