EU interior ministers decided Thursday to start visa dialogue with Turkey by approving the readmission agreement.
However, Ankara expects the EU to allow Turkish citizens to travel to member states without visa in a gradual way. To this end, EU member states have to authorize the European Commission to carry out negotiations with Turkey to lift visa procedures.
EU Commissioner for Home Affairs Cecilia Malmstrom said that she was glad that EU ministers decided to start visa dialogue with Turkey, stating that if she was invited, she could visit Turkish capital, Ankara and launch talks.
Malmstrom said that there could be visa exemptions for some groups, such as students and researchers. The decision that was approved today was a very important step, she said.
The EU, which has launched visa-free travel with all candidate and potential candidate countries except Kosovo so far, is negotiating with its neighbors including Russia, Ukraine and Moldova to lift visa procedures.
EU's visa facilitation agreement with Georgia will take effect next month.
AAGüncelleme Tarihi: 25 Şubat 2011, 10:28