The Refugee Deal – more risk than gain? EU and Turkey striking new paths in cooperation

The EU’s landmark refugee deal with Turkey has put Turkey-EU relations on a new footing. But ever since, there is an enduring discussion between its skeptics and proponents. On the one hand, proponents defend the position that the fine-tuned refugee deal could be viewed as a balanced compromise between Turkey and the EU providing Europe with a hands-off solution to curb the flow of refugees onto its shores. On the other hand, skeptics from both sides claim that the deal’s risks outnumber its gains and that the resolution has crossed a line in terms of financial and political concessions to Turkey in light of its democratic rollback, compromising the credibility of European values. Critics argue that the deal is unethical and will completely derail the accession perspective to make Turkey the buffer-zone of the “Fortress Europe”. The panel speakers will discuss the role that the refugee deal assumes in the context of European refugee politics, EU-Turkey relations and their respective foreign policy agendas in the Middle East including Syria, as well as its impact on the future of the EU.

Opening Speeches:
Dilek Kurban, Marie Curie Fellow at the Hertie School of Governance, Berlin; Co-Chair of the Dahrendorf Working Group ‘Europe and Turkey’
Arzuhan Doğan Yalçındağ, President, Doğan TV Holding and Co-President of TCCI Advisory Board

Senem Aydin Düzgit, Associate Professor and Jean Monnet Chair in the Department of International Relations at Bilgi University, Istanbul
Kristian Brakel, Head of Office Heinrich Böll Foundation Turkey
Magdalena Kirchner, Transatlantic Fellow at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP)
Soli Özel, Professor of International Relations at Kadir Has University in Istanbul and Columnist at Habertürk daily newspaper

Ali Aslan, TV Presenter and Journalist

The opinions expressed in this blog contribution are entirely those of the author and do not represent the positions of the Dahrendorf Forum or its hosts Hertie School and London School of Economics or its funder Stiftung Mercator.