The German government updated warnings for citizens who travel to Turkey, as Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel announced on Thursday. This step challenges the diplomatic relations between the two countries.

After countless provocations from President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the ongoing arrest of German journalist Deniz Yücel, and the latest arrests of human-rights activists, with one German among them, the German Foreign Ministry declared, that German citizens who are travelling to Turkey for tourist or business reasons are urged to increased caution. It is also recommended, that they sign in to a list by German embassies or consulates, to announce their stay in Turkey. This happened with the background that, “in some cases Germans were affected by custodial measures, neither reasons nor duration were transparent”. Only recently the Turkish government released a list with German companies, that are said to support the “terrorist Gulen movement”. The German government wants Turkey to act reasonable again, following the values of NATO. This new orientation in the Turkish-German relations happened, because “it is the state’s duty, to protect the citizens by adapting the safety information about Turkey”, Gabriel said. The decision was made in consultation with Chancellor Angela Merkel, who supports these measures on Twitter as “necessary and indispensable”.

The Turkish government responded to this decision as an “irresponsible political move” by Berlin. They blame Sigmar Gabriel of acting for “domestic political reasons” and for disrespect on the Turkish judiciary.