Greece wants the renewal and "extension" of the 2016 agreement between the EU and Turkey to curb migrant arrivals to Europe, Greece's migration minister said Saturday.
We want an agreement. The climate is positive," the new migration minister, Dimitris Kairidis, told state broadcaster ERT. "This agreement will be mainly Euro-Turkish. This is a Euro-Turkish problem," he added.
After the 2015 migration crisis, EU countries reached an agreement with Ankara whereby Turkey keeps migrants, mainly Syrians, on its soil for a large financial consideration -- part of the €6 billion promised then has yet to be provided.
The aim is to amend and "extend" the 2016 agreement "at the initiative of Greece, because we have a more immediate interest", as a European country on the front line of immigration, Kairidis said.
The issue is to be at the heart of a meeting on 7 December between senior Greek and Turkish officials in Thessaloniki.
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met in New York this week.
Like Italy, Greece has seen a surge in migrant arrivals this year. According to the ministry, more than 18,000 people arrived in the first eight months of the year, a 106 percent increase compared to 2022.