17 November 2015
Brussels – ESI at public event: The Syrian refugee crisis and its implications for EU-Turkey relations
Refugees arriving at the Greek island of Kos. Photo: flickr/Christopher Jahn/IFRC
Refugees arriving at the Greek island of Kos. Photo: flickr/Christopher Jahn/IFRC

ESI's Gerald Knaus was invited to present ESI's proposal for the Syrian refugee crisis at the Turkish Insights Policy Dialogue in Brussels, organised by the European Policy Centre, in cooperation with the Turkish Confederation of Businessmen and Industrialists (TUSKON).


  • Gerald Knaus, Director, European Stability Initiative
  • Zehra Çolak, Head of Foreign Affairs Department, Kimse Yok Mu (Turkish NGO)
  • Annabelle Roig, Senior External Relations Officer, UNHCR
  • Amanda Paul, Senior Policy Analyst, European Policy Centre (Moderator)

Tuesday 17 November 2015, 10.30-12.30
EPC Auditorium, Rue du Trône 14-16, 1000 Brussels

The civil war in Syria has already triggered the world's largest humanitarian crisis since the Second World War. Millions of Syrians have fled their country with over 5 million now located in several neighbouring states, including Turkey, which now hosts at least two and half million refugees. Over the last few months there has been a significant upsurge in refugees travelling to the EU with over half a million arriving and heading to northern Europe, principally to Germany. The majority have come through Turkey via the Aegean Sea, relying on smugglers. This development has been a wake-up call for the EU, which now recognizes the necessity for cooperation with Turkey in order to better control the flow of refugees into the EU and led to the development of an EU-Turkey Action Plan for the Syrian refugee crisis.

The panel analysed the situation on the ground in Turkey and the EU, evaluated the EU-Turkey Action Plan and how it could be implemented and looked at what kind of longer term assistance Turkey will require to support the refugees.

EPC report on the event

About us
Photo credits
Alan Grant is an Irish photographer who travelled extensively in the Balkans and other countries and regions of the world. Thanks to him, ESI is able to show fascinating pictures of the Balkans: the facades of Tirana, the painted mosques of Travnik, the fabulous old houses of Plovdiv and the spectacular blue of water - dark in the Bay of Kotor, emerald in the river valleys of Bosnia, deep blue in Ohrid, twinkling in the Aegean Sea and on the Bosporus.

You can find out more about Alan Grant on his websites:
Jonathan Lewis lives between London and Istanbul. He moved to London and spent many years studying photography and now specialises in photojournalism, documentary photography and commercial work for a wide variety of private and commercial clients in the UK, Europe and Turkey. His work has appeared in a number of magazines and publications and is used on the ESI website as well.

You can find out more about Jonathan Lewis on his website www.jonathanlewisphoto.com