17:38 GMT +321 November 2019
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    German Foreign Ministry Secretly Warns MPs Against Trips to Turkey

    © AFP 2019 / JOHN MACDOUGALL
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    The German Foreign Ministry has secretly called on the Bundestag deputies with Turkish roots to refrain from visiting Turkey, Spiegel Online reported.

    The ministry's administration will keep MPs informed about the situation and provide them with new data on the issue in the near future, Foreign Ministry's spokesman Martin Schaefer said during a briefing.

    "It is true that in the light of the events of recent days the Foreign Ministry is reviewing political and legal conditions that currently exist in Turkey… We believe, at least according to media reports, that Turkey put forward criminal charges against the German Bundestag deputies of Turkish origin. How and when Turkish officials will open a criminal case on the basis of these allegations, we don't know. Therefore it is reasonable that the Ministry of Foreign affairs… will further consider the situation," Schaefer said.

    "I know that… soon the affected deputies will be informed in written form by the Foreign Ministry on the status of these considerations," the politician added.

    According to Spiegel Online, German authorities recommended Bundestag members with Turkish roots to refrain from traveling to Turkey as their safety there cannot be guaranteed.

    The magazine also reported that a number of German deputies who originally come from Turkey have already refused to spend holidays in the country. One of the deputies even asked his parents, who live in Turkey, to move to another country.

    After the Bundestag recognized the crimes against the Armenians in the Ottoman Empire as genocide, German MPs with Turkish roots have been repeatedly insulted in social media, in particular by Ankara officials and even received death threats.

    Earlier, German newspaper Bild claimed that Turkey is preparing at least three lawsuits against 11 German MPs with Turkish roots. Two lawsuits were initiated by Turkish police trade unions, while the third such document was lodged by the Turkish association of lawyers, according to Bild.

    The German MPs will be accused of publicly discrediting the Turkish nation, the Republic of Turkey, the Grand National Assembly of Turkey, the Turkish government and state bodies of justice, Bild said.

    Related:

    Turkey Expects German Gov't to Swear Off Armenian Genocide Vote
    German MPs of Turkish Origin Get Death Threats After Armenian Genocide Vote
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    MPs, travel, Armenian Genocide, Turkey, Germany
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