Refugee crisis and Russia on EU Summit agenda

Sanctions against Russia over Syrian conflict could be on the table

The EU “28” leaders have arrived at the Summit meeting in Brussels to discuss a wide range of topics, with the refugee crisis expected to be at the top of the agenda, while UK PM Theresa May will inform the rest of the leaders on the progress of the country’s exit from the EU. The 27 have underlined that they will continue to support a relation between trade links and free movement of citizens. The leaders will focus on the management migrant and refugee flows and ways to stem control their passage into the EU through deals with countries of origin and transit in Africa to achieve a better and more effective return policy.

UK PM Theresa May arriving at the summit stressed that the Britain would continue to play an active part during the country’s transition out of the union and that it would continue to be a strong and reliable partner to the EU.

The President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz stressed that if the UK desired full access to the EU market, it would have to accept the fundamental principles of the EU that included free movement.

Upon his arrival at the Summit, the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk clarified that there would be no negotiations over the Brexit at the Summit, while he rejected the possibility that PM May would face a hostile climate at the meeting. On the matter of the stance the EU would take towards Russia over the Syrian war, Tusk underlined that the union would leave the option of imposing sanctions open.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel noted that Brexit was a small part of the meeting, expressing hope that the leaders could bring the atrocities going on in the Syrian conflict, with the support of Russia, could be brought to light.