Turkey seeks to debunk Vote Leave claims ahead of British referendum

Turkey's delegation to the European Union lashed out Monday at those arguing ahead of Britain's EU referendum that Turkey could soon receive visa-free access or even join the bloc and flood Britain with new migrants.

Turkey began EU accession talks more than 10 years ago. Under a recent deal aimed at stemming migrant flows into Europe, Brussels offered the prospect of visa-free travel for Turkish citizens visiting Europe, as well as progress on membership talks.

Proponents of Brexit, or a British departure from the EU, have argued that London is powerless to stop Turkey joining the EU and enjoying full freedom of movement for its citizens.

"Dismayed by the lies spread by some Brexiters about Turkey and her EU membership prospects," the Turkish delegation to Brussels wrote on Twitter, adding that this would only happen once the country reaches EU standards in all fields and every member state agrees to the move.

It also noted in a separate message that visa-free travel for Turkish citizens would only apply to those countries within Europe that have lifted internal border controls.

"A reminder: Visa liberalization for Turkey is only for Schengen countries, in which the UK does not belong," the tweet said.

"Nevertheless, no need to fear Turks streaming into the EU. We only want it for practical reasons. We have better weather!" a fourth message stated.

"Finally, we never thought Brits to be afraid of anything," the delegation wrote, adding that "fearing citizens of an ally is totally nonsense."

Last update: Fri, 24/06/2016 - 08:49

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