Germany Warns Its Citizens: They Risk Arrest If Traveling To Turkey

Escalation of the diplomatic row between Berlin and Ankara ended in a clear message. Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel warned German citizens that they risk arrest if they travel to Turkey.

As reports, the German government on Friday warned citizens travelling to Turkey that they are at risk of arrest.

Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said Germany had revised its travel advice in the wake of the recent arrests of several human rights activists, including German national Peter Steudtner.

Steudtner “was no Turkey expert – he never wrote about Turkey, he had no contacts in the political establishment … and never appeared as a critic,” Gabriel told reporters.

He added that this meant that any German national travelling to Turkey could suffer the same fate.

Peter Steudtner, a human rights consultant and documentary film maker, was arrested together with five more people in Istanbul on July 5. Among the other activists arrested is also Amnesty International’s director for Turkey, Idil Eser.

The arrested activists are to remain in custody awaiting trial for allegedly aiding a terror group. Pre-trial detention in Turkey can last for up to five years due to the state of emergency law that went into effect after the failed coup attend last year.

Amnesty International’s Turkey researcher Andrew Gardner said that the arrested human rights activists had been accused of supporting an “armed terrorist organization” without being members, though the Turkish court did not provide details or name the terror group.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel condemned Steudtner’s detention, saying it was “absolutely unjustified.”

“We declare our solidarity with him and all the others arrested … the German government will do all it can, on all levels, to secure his release,” she said.

The foreign ministry issued a separate statement calling for the rapid release of the six activists. “Linking a fighter and spokesman for human rights and democracy like Peter Steudtner to supporters of terrorists is absurd,” the statement said.

On Wednesday, government spokesman Steffen Seibert tweeted a quote by Angela Merkel on Foreign Minister’s measures.

Chancellor Merkel: “The measures presented by Foreign Ministry concerning Turkey are necessary and indispensable with regards to the developments.”

Now Gabriel, Merkel and European Union officials work closely to decide on other diplomatic and economic sanctions against Turkey.

As a first step, Berlin strikes a blow to tourism and investment. Then it will seek ways to stop EU funding to the country where President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has turned into an absolute dictator.

Indeed, as Bloomberg reports, while Turkish tourism was just beginning to recover from its worst streak of declines on record, visits from Germany, traditionally the largest source of tourists, are still well below averages of past years.

Ankara has accused Berlin of intervening in its internal issues. The diplomatic row between the two countries has a long background. Berlin did not allow Erdogan and other officials to hold open meetings with Turks in Germany, Ankara banned German Lawmakers from visiting troops in the air base Incirlik. Result: German troops moved to another country. Ever since last July, Ankara has been accusing Germany of ‘hosting coup plotters and terrorists’ as Berlin granted asylum to several hundreds of Turkish officers assigned to NATO.


Ghordius Haus-Targaryen Thu, 07/20/2017 - 09:13 Permalink

2014? seriously? at least Giovanni brought some stuff from 2015/2016but your statistics of 2014 are nevertheless very interesting, for my argumentTurks are one substantial group, in Germany... that creates less crime that many other, if you read the statisticsMurder: Turks 5, Russians... 6Manslaughter: Turks 8, Russians... 9Child abuse: Turks 1.4, Americans... 2.1Rape: Turks 8, Romanians... 10and so on. I just took the first four, took the Turkish number and compared it with the next higher non-Muslim groupyour statistics, the ones you choose. yes, you do not understand... your own evidencewhich says that a Russian is more likely to kill then a Turk, that an American is more likely to abuse a child then a Turk?at what point do you decide to leave your fantasy world and enter reality?

In reply to by Haus-Targaryen

Ghordius Haus-Targaryen Thu, 07/20/2017 - 10:31 Permalink

I did your homework. whereas you claim the equivalent of "look! squirrel!" instead of at least admitting that "the dog ate it"show me even one country where foreigners have lower crime rate then the domestic populationthey tend to be less well adapted, you know?again: this guy came with "Muslim Turks" and claimed that they are kind of free to commit crimes. that's a lie, just thatyou and Giovanni came with a lot of things, among them lies... and statistics you don't seem to understand or have read before postingbut hey, if you prefer ZH to become the echo chamber that is becoming... suit yourself

In reply to by Haus-Targaryen

Ghordius giovanni_f Thu, 07/20/2017 - 08:55 Permalink

the comment was about Turksthe first link, from 2015, is about refugees, which are not Turks. and it asks the question if "from above" there was an order, in Cologne, about "leaving those guys with their petards alone"the second link, from 2016, is from "" <- hello? the name? it has been debunked as a bunch of lies, btw. and, again, it's not about Turks, it is about refugees and migrantsthe third link is from 2016 and... it's about 2015, again. and it cites the crime statistics in general. whereas, btw, crime is going down, in Germany, over the last two years. and... it's again not about Turksyou can call me "a piece of shit" as much as you want, but you, my dear Giovanni, live in a fantasy world made up of regurgitated lies. that makes you a... snowflakeand I prefer to be a stronzo if the alternative is to be a snowflake, with or without jackboots, does not matter

In reply to by giovanni_f

Glyndwr will return Thu, 07/20/2017 - 08:17 Permalink

Mmm actually that is a significant step.No Germans means anyone too who might be mistaken for one, which would be most Northern Europeans. Would you book a connecting flight which transits through Turkey now?Looks like a wall going up to me. And it's a German one.About time!

c2nnib2l Thu, 07/20/2017 - 08:20 Permalink

Having in mind that there is 3 milion Turks living in Germany that might be a bit difficult ! Probably half of them if not more got German passport 

messystateofaffairs Thu, 07/20/2017 - 08:28 Permalink

Dear Erdogan,You have been marked for regime change by your allies. But you know that already. I think you are so insensitive about their whining when you take defensive measures. Everybody with sense these days seems to be taking defensive measures against all the colorful help dear old (and hopefully soon to die) George so generously offers.

JailBanksters Thu, 07/20/2017 - 08:37 Permalink

Seems strange having to warn people about going to turkey for a Holiday !!Or does Germany censor all Newz like the USA, in which case the People have no Idea what is happening anywhere. 

neutrino3 Thu, 07/20/2017 - 08:37 Permalink

So, Gabriella has still no information about jailed Piskorski in Poland. Or standard "close-eyes-boo-boo-gone" mantra.This time it will not pass. There is healthy mail hand on irr but.

my new username Thu, 07/20/2017 - 08:51 Permalink

Angela will be sending in the EU PanzerKorps, 1st Brigade, Armored Sun-lounger Towel Placing Division, to launch a blitzkreif attack on the pools and beaches of Turkey. It will end in failure.