The Greek government has asked to have an explicit commitment from Europe’s leaders that the borders will not be sealed off prior to the emergency EU summit meeting on March 6. The focus of this summit will be the refugee crisis and Turkey is expected to participate.
The European Commission has already issued a text with the conclusions of the February 18-19 summit, which include a commitment by EU’s 28 leaders to protect the Schengen Agreement.
The commitment to protect the Schengen zone implies not sealing off EU’s external borders, but the Greek government appears afraid that some European governments will proceed unilaterally to seal off their borders once they leave Brussels.
In fact, Greek PM Alexis Tsipras threatened overnight to veto the conclusions of the EU summit over the handling of the refugee crisis if there was no political commitment to keep borders open.
The Greek government is particularly worried about the Visegrad group — the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland,and Slovakia — with Poland’s Europe Minister Konrad Szymanski telling Sky’s Europe Correspondent Mark Stone that the Greek threat is “serious, but I hope we can manage this.”