Greece’s Mitsotakis warns EU of ‘asymmetric’ threat from Turkish border

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis told visiting European Commissioner for Home Affairs Ylva Johansson that the European bloc faced an “asymmetric threat” on its land and sea borders after Turkey allowed migrants to travel freely toward Europe, Greek daily Kathimerini reported.

Mitsotakis accused Turkey of using migrants as pawns against Greece and the European Union and said the recent wave of tension, which brought thousands of migrants to the buffer zone separating Turkey and Greece, was not a regular issue of migration but a matter of national security.

The Greek leader’s warning echoed statements he made on Tuesday at a joint press conference with European Council President Charles Michel, European Commisson head Ursula von der Leyen and European Parliament head David Sassoli.

That press conference came a day after Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan visited Michel and von der Leyen in Brussels to discuss an update on the deal Turkey and the EU signed in 2016 to curb migration.

Erdoğan has repeatedly complained that Turkey has not received the full 6 billion euros promised in that deal, and is believed to want additional funding, as well as an updated customs union agreement and visa-free travel for Turkish citizens, for a new migration deal.

The Greek prime minister also called for a proportional allocation of refugees from first-entry countries to other European states during his meeting with Johansson, Kathimerini said.