Cite as: Gregou, M., 2017, "Conditionality, migration control and bilateral disputes: The view from the Greek–Turkish borders in the Aegean". Mediterranean Politics, pp.1-22
The article provides a conceptual framework for understanding the return of third country nationals from Greece and the European Union, as well as their readmission by Turkey, a critical issue of migration policy at the European external borders. Return and readmission could be conceptualized as integral to the EU conditionality, a key tool at the disposal of the European Union to encourage and ensure compliance with its norms. In this respect, incentives are offered to countries of origin or transit as reward for the enforcement of expulsion decisions and the regulation of migration issues. Return and readmission could also be understood in respect to cooperation between two sovereign states, wherein expected costs and benefits are constantly (re)evaluated on the basis of their recurrent bilateral interactions. Thus, migration issues between Greece and Turkey should be grasped as indivisible to relations between a member state and a prospective one; in this sense, they could be interpreted in relation to Turkey’s progress towards the adoption of the acquis communautaire, in the light however of the politically volatile border between the two countries.