Germany will evaluate the asylum application of Turkish soldiers: Minister
AP photoGerman Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere on Feb. 3 ruled out the Turkish government’s demand to not evaluate the asylum application of 40 Turkish NATO soldiers suspected of being members of the Gülen network, believed to have orchestrated the failed July 15, 2016 coup attempt.
Speaking to a German newspaper, de Maiziere said they will not apply “special treatment” for Turkish applicants, stressing that the regular procedures under the control of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) will be employed.
“The Federal Office for Migration and Refugees takes its decisions alone within the framework of the law. This is undoubtedly also the case for the applications made by Turks,” he added.
De Maiziere also said that the likelihood of the soldiers’ asylum applications turning out positive was “low,” as in 2016 only eight percent of such applications were approved. However, he noted that asylum applications from Turkey had increased over the past year.
After the German media reported that Turkish soldiers applied to the German authorities to be granted asylum, arguing that they were innocent but would face imprisonment in Turkey, Defense Minister Fikri Işık urged Germany not to evaluate the applications of the soldiers and to return them to Turkey.