Germany investigates allegation of Turkish spies infiltrating immigration
LOS ANGELES, United States (Kurdistan 24) – Several Turkish nationals escaping Tukey’s crackdown and seeking asylum in Germany have had their information stolen by Turkish media that smears their reputation, some applicants said.
The claimants argue their personal information, some of which even their family was not aware of, has been distributed on state-run Turkish media, according to reports.
They say that shortly after meeting with officials from Germany’s Federal Office for Migration and Refugees, they became the subject of critical reports in their homeland.
Germany’s domestic intelligence agencies are currently investigating the claims that Turkish spies infiltrated German immigration authorities.
An investigation by German public broadcaster ARD and newsmagazine Der Spiegel have verified that some of these claims, and at least two cases, are under review.
At least 15 freelance interpreters have been sacked for lack of neutrality.
Cem Özdemir, the leader of Germany’s Green Party, has called for better screening of interpreters in response to the allegations.
Approximately three million Turks live in Germany, making up the largest Turkish diaspora.
German media says about 1.2 million Germans of Turkish descent are eligible to vote in Turkish elections.
Over the last year, more and more Turks have escaped the purge in the military, judiciary, and other civil institutions that followed the failed coup in July 2016.
In July 2017, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim warned that Germany’s decision to grant asylum to Turks accused of participating in last year’s failed coup has further heightened tensions between the two countries.
“Germany’s decision to grant asylum to putschist soldiers is an important development that will add more tension to our relations,” he said, in comments broadcast live on television during a speech in Parliament.
German officials claim 414 Turkish citizens with diplomatic passports and other government work permits had requested asylum in Germany following the attempted coup last year.
Several requests by Turkish applicants were approved according to the German Ministry of Interior.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany