Following intense negotiations, EU leaders achieved a deal which strengthens Britain’s special status in the EU. It is a legally binding and irreversible decision by all 28 leaders. The settlement addresses all of Prime Minister Cameron’s concerns without compromising EU fundamental values.
Following the December 2015 European Council, the European Council agreed to find mutually satisfactory solutions in four areas of concern at its February 18-19 meeting:
- economic governance
- social benefits and free movement
EU leaders adopted conclusions on the migration and refugee crisis. The debate focused on the latest developments since leaders last met in December but also on the necessity to build a European consensus on migration.
They also confirmed their intention to organise a special meeting with Turkey in the beginning of March.Discussions focused on:
- progress made in the implementation of the EU-Turkey Action Plan but also the need to see a substantial and sustainable reduction of the number of illegal entries from Turkey
- humanitarian assistance to Syrian refugees, including in the Western Balkans countries
- external border management
- the need to gradually get back to a situation where all Members of the Schengen area fully apply the Schengen Borders Code
- the requirement for hotspots to be fully functional
- the implementation of decisions on relocation, returns and readmission
SOURCE: European Council
PHOTO: European Union