Turkish Prime Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu and German Chancellor, Angela Merkel have met under auspices of United Nations (UN) General Assembly in New York in order to discuss the growing refugee crisis and escalating Syrian conflict.
Turkish government sources have said that the meeting was held on Saturday at Germany’s permanent mission to the UN, where the leaders discussed European Union’s stance toward continuing refugee crisis and Turkey’s suggestions to find a concrete resolution to the human-made disaster, according to Turkish Anadolu Agency.
Thousands of Syrian refugees have been marching towards western European countries, using a route through Greece-Macedonia-Serbia-Hungary-Austria from east to west, forcing the 28-member bloc to face its worst refugee crisis in decades.
EU interior ministers on Tuesday, were finally able to reach an agreement over quotas to distribute 120,000 refugees among member states following long discussions.
Turkey is a transit point for refugees aiming to reach European countries from Syria, because of its geography bridging the Middle East and Europe.
Syrian refugees escaping the violence in their country fled Syria in large numbers following the escalation of the Syrian Civil War in 2012. One of their most preferred destinations was neighbouring Turkey, which hosts the most Syrian refugees in the world, numbered around almost 2 million according to registration records of the United Nations.
Both prime ministers are in the US and participating in the 70th meeting of UN general assembly.
Turkish media has reported that the high-level meeting of the leaders was also joined by Turkish Foreign Minister, Feridun Sinirlioglu and National Intelligence Organization (MIT) Chief, Hakan Fidan.
During the meeting, Merkel received Davutoglu’s letter comprising Turkey’s recommendations connected to the resolution of the refugee crisis and expressed her own gratitude for the content of the letter according to the media accounts.
The leaders have also discussed current state of the worsening Syrian conflict, the media sources have reported.
Davutoglu told Merkel that the protection of Syrian people from the air bombardment of Bashar al Assad regime and the attacks of militant groups has the utmost importance. Turkish PM informed his counterpart that Turkish concerns related to these important issues have also been conveyed to the leadership of EU.
Both countries have reportedly been aiming to establish a bilateral working group represented at ministerial level of the countries. The countries agreed that their planned working group should come together with EU countries and institutions, among whom Greece should have a priority.