According to a recent EUobserver report, Germany issued a warning to all nationals visiting Turkey to beware of posting social media messages that criticized Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Tensions are on the rise since the controversial Khashoggi affair has caused increased friction in the region.
The German Foreign Ministry has warned citizens traveling to Turkey to lay off criticizing the country’s leader, Recep Erdogan in the wake of a rebellion against the embattled Turkish leader which prompted thousands of arrests of people accused of supporting exiled cleric Fethullah Gulen. A small number of those arrested are German-Turkish dual citizens, a fact that has fueled tensions between the two countries. The ministry statement said:
“Arrests and prosecution of German nationals have been repeatedly linked with anti-government criticism on social media. It is enough to share or ‘like’ a post with such content.”
The warning told of German/Turkish citizens being detained even if they simply “liked” the postings of others who criticized the Turkish regime. The warning has come to a shock to other foreign nationals visiting Turkey as well. British tourists
Back in June, the United States Department of State updated its travel advisory for Turkey, warning about “increasing risks” in some areas of the country and arbitrary detentions. The State Department statement reads in part:
“Reconsider travel to Turkey due to terrorism and arbitrary detentions. Do not travel to the areas along the Turkey-Syria border and the southeastern provinces of Hatay, Kilis, Gaziantep, Şanlıurfa, Şırnak, Diyarbakir, Van, Siirt, Muş, Mardin, Batman, Bingöl, Tunceli, Hakkari, and Bitlis due to terrorism.”
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