Top Turkish, German diplomats to discuss tourism

Top Turkish, German diplomats to discuss tourism

ANKARA- Anadolu Agency
Top Turkish, German diplomats to discuss tourism

The top diplomats of Turkey and Germany are scheduled to meet in Berlin on July 1 to discuss tourism and travel restrictions introduced to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas told reporters on Wednesday that the talks with his Turkish counterpart Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu would focus on the pandemic, as well as criteria for lifting Germany's ongoing warning for travel to and from Turkey.

"We'll exchange further information. We'll talk about our criteria," he said, referring to a set of standards set out by the German government to lift travel warnings for non-EU countries.

"I hope it'll be possible for us to better assess the situation in Turkey with more information," he added. 

Later, the Turkish Foreign Ministry confirmed Çavuşoğlu’s visit to Germany, saying Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy will accompany him.

“The delegation will also include high-level officials from the Ministry of Health,” the ministry said in a statement.

“At the talks during the visit, besides cooperation on overcoming the COVID-19 crisis, bilateral relations with a special emphasis on tourism, enhancing Turkey-EU relations in the context of Germany’s EU Presidency as well as regional and international issues will be discussed,” it added. 

Germany decided last month to lift its global travel warning for EU member states and associated countries, but extended it for all the other countries until the end of August.

Berlin's decision drew criticism of Ankara, with Turkish officials stressing that Turkey managed the pandemic better than many European countries and that its tourism facilities were safer than those in Europe.

Turkey is one of the most popular travel destinations for German holidaymakers. Nearly 5 million German tourists traveled to Turkey last year.

Turkish, German leaders discuss virus, situation in Syria, Libya

Meanwhile, the Turkish president and German chancellor discussed over the phone developments in Syria and Libya, as well as the fight against novel coronavirus, Turkey’s Directorate of Communications said on July 1. 

In a statement, the directorate said that Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Angela Merkel discussed “bilateral relations, cooperation in the fight against COVID-19 and developments regarding regional issues, Libya and Syria in particular.”