European Commission Vice President Frans Timmermans (L) and Turkey's minister for European Affairs Vokan Bozkir hold a joint press conference in Ankara, on January 11, 2016. / AFP / ADEM ALTAN
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The number of migrants crossing the Aegean Sea from Turkey to Greece is "still way too high," a top EU official said Monday, a month and a half after a deal aimed to limit the flow.European Union vice president Frans Timmermans said Turkey and Brussels had to speed work up on implementing the action plan, while Ankara reaffirmed it was looking at a measure to tempt more Syrians to stay in Turkey by granting them work permits.Under the November 29 deal, EU leaders pledged three billion euros ($3.2 billion) in aid for the more than 2.2 million Syrian refugees sheltering in Turkey, in exchange for Ankara acting to reduce the flow.Under pressure from voters at home, EU leaders want to reduce the numbers coming to the European Union after over one million migrants reached Europe in 2015 .Bozkir said that Turkey was expending "intense efforts" on halting the migrant flow, saying the Turkish authorities were stopping 500 people every day.
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