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Austria asks for €600 million to cover costs for migrants

Staff writer |
Austrian Chancellor Werner Feymann said the EU's border agency Frontex should send asylum seekers entering the EU via Greece back to Turkey.

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Austria has also requested €600 million from the EU to cover extra costs for accepting more refugees.

"Frontex must pick up the people fleeing to Greece. We have to save all of them, but then these people should be sent directly to Turkey," Austrian Chancellor Werner Feymann said in an interview to, following a meeting with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu on Thursday.

In exchange for cooperation, Austria will speed up the transfer to Turkey of €3 billion ($3.3 billion) EU-promised financial aid, designed to provide for the needs of 2.2 million Syrian refugees staying in the country, sources close to the chancellor were quoted by the APA news agency as saying.

Austria wants Frontex to become a de-facto “border security program” instead of “rescue program,” which it is at the moment, Werner added. If Turkey fails to back the proposal, Austria will have to step up border security even more on its own.

“We cannot say that our border is open from the bottom up. It’s not like that and it shouldn’t be,” the chancellor said, reiterating the claims that Austria will stick to its plan to deport 50,000 asylum seekers, whose applications have been rejected, in the next four years.

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