Turkish foreign minister has called on the German government to change its travel advice on Turkey, stressing that it is out-dated and does not reflect the real situation in the country.
“The latest travel advice is not reflecting realities of Turkey and the current state of our bilateral relations,” Mevlut Cavusoglu told a joint news conference with his German counterpart, ahead of their meeting in Berlin on Tuesday.
Cavusoglu underlined that Turkey has addressed all possible concerns, achieved normalization after the defeated coup in 2016, and has taken strong security measures along its border with Syria against potential threats.
"Today, our touristic destinations Antalya or Istanbul, are no less secure than any other city in Europe," he said.
Turkey has been one of the most popular travel destinations for German holidaymakers, but the number of visitors declined in recent years, due to conflicts in countries neighboring Turkey, as well political tensions between Ankara and Berlin.
The number of German tourists dropped from 5.5 million in 2015 to 3.9 million in 2016, according to official figures. In 2017, around 3.5 million German tourists traveled to Turkey.
Cavusoglu hoped efforts in recent months to normalize political relations would also have a positive impact on tourism.
"In the first three months of this year, there has been a significant increase in the number of German visitors," he said, and added that early bookings have also increased up to 80 percent, compared with the same period last year.
The Turkish foreign minister said the figures have shown that German tourists, who opted for other countries in the past two years, would again prefer to travel Turkey.