Germany Reportedly Warns Lawmakers With Turkish Roots Against Travel to Turkey

Erdogan accuses 11 lawmakers of Turkish origin who voted for the resolution to declare Armenians' killings as genocide of being terrorists; lawmakers placed under police protection after receiving death threats.

German Green party MP Cem Oezdemir speaks during a debate on recognizing the Armenian genocide during the 173rd sitting of the Bundestag, Berlin, Germany, June 2, 2016.
Odd Anderson, AFP

Germany's Foreign Ministry has warned lawmakers with Turkish roots against travelling to the country for now because their safety cannot be guaranteed, the magazine Der Spiegel reported on Saturday.

A resolution in the German parliament this month declaring the 1915 massacre of Armenians by Ottoman forces a genocide has added to tensions between Berlin and Ankara.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has said that the 11 lawmakers of Turkish origin who voted for the resolution should be given blood tests, and has accused them of having "tainted blood" and of being terrorists.

The leader of Germany's Green party, Cem Oezdemir, who pushed for the resolution, has also received death threats.

Spiegel said the ministry had come to the conclusion that the lawmakers' safety could not be guaranteed.

"It's unspeakable to know that it's not possible to fly there for now," Aydan Oezoguz, Germany's integration commissioner, was quoted by the magazine as saying.

Other lawmakers with Turkish roots have also cancelled business trips to the country, Der Spiegel said.

The Frankfurter Allgemeine reported in its Sunday edition that the 11 lawmakers have been placed under police protection after receiving death threats.

The decision to extend their police escort was made after a meeting late Saturday with Berlin and German federal police. 

A police spokeswoman declined to provide details of the threats, but said the measures were appropriate to guarantee the lawmakers' safety.

"The threats against Turkish-origin delegates are unacceptable," German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere was quoted as saying. "Security measures will be taken accordingly."