At least five European countries have closed their consulates in Türkiye and cancelled visa and passport appointments due to fears of terror threats, following protests against the recent public burnings of the Quran in Sweden, the Netherlands and Denmark by far-right groups.

Amongst the first consulates to close was that of Great Britain. The country’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office also updated its Türkiye travel advice, warning its citizens of possible risk when travelling to this country, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.

Taksim, Istanbul, Turkiye

There is a potential that citizens from Western countries may be targets or caught up in attacks, particularly in the major cities.

The German consulate in Türkiye stopped working on the same day, also cancelling visa and passport appointments, without implying when they would get back to work. German Embassy in Ankara, on the other hand, remains open.

The consulate has also advised German citizens living in Türkiye and German tourists to avoid Istanbul’s central district of Beyoglu and the Taksim Square these days, as well as areas where international crowds gather.

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Following recent cases in several European capitals where the Quran was publicly burned or destroyed, security agencies believe the risk of terrorist attacks in Istanbul has increased.

The Swedish and Dutch consulates have also stopped receiving visitors due to the same concerns. The French Consulate General in Istanbul, on the other hand, has warned it will remain closed to the public for two work days in a row.

In a video statement publish in his official Twitter account, the Turkish Minister of Interior Süleyman Soylu said that the western countries have launched a new psychological war against Türkiye.

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We all know very well that their aim is to overshadow Türkiye’s stability and peace, he said adding that the embassies and consulates had closed on the same day that Türkiye announced that it had achieved a tourism income of $46 billion.

The Ministry of Interior of Türkiye had also issued a travel warning for Turkish citizens, urging them to refrain from traveling to these countries, citing anti-Muslim and anti-Turkish activities, and noting that possible Islamophobic, xenophobic and racist attacks may occur.

The advice was issued after on January 21, far-right politician and anti-Islam provocateur, Rasmus Paludan, a dual Danish-Swedish national, burned the Islam holy book in front of the Turkish embassy in Stockholm.

Schengen Visa / ABC Flash Point News 2023.

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Joy Boy
Joy Boy
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02-02-23 19:57

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