Tusk recommends revised Turkey migrant deal to EU leaders: EU official

BRUSSELS: EU president Donald Tusk recommended Friday that European Union leaders approve a revised deal with Turkey to halt the massive influx of migrants into the bloc, an EU official said.

“President Tusk presented a revised text to the 28 leaders and recommended that they adopt it without changes,” the official said as they met to discuss the results of intense morning talks between Tusk and Turkish Premier Ahmet Davutoglu in Brussels.

The official, who asked not to be named, said Tusk believed the new proposals, which include a controversial plan for Turkey to take back all new migrants arriving in Greece, took full account of their wishes.

He added: “It is acceptable to the Turkish side.” Under the terms of the deal, migrants arriving in Greece after a cutoff date of Sunday would be sent back to Turkey following assessment, the official said.

The Turkish delegation to the EU said in a tweeted message: “Look forward 2 a deal before dinner.” The head of cabinet for European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker also tweeted: “We will have an agreement today.”

Davutoglu had warned on arriving for the talks Friday that there could be no bargaining over the refugees’ plight. Tusk had also faced reservations that the EU was compromising too much on core values in its desperation to settle the crisis.