Turkey safe for tourists, say senior UK counterterrorism officials

Published 28.06.2016 20:30

British counterterrorism officials met with Parliament's Internal Affairs Commission head Celalettin Güvenç in Ankara on Monday, assuring British tourists that Turkey is safe to visit. The meeting between the U.K.'s Joint Unit for International Counter-Terrorism Strategy Jane Marriott and the director of the Foreign Office Counter-terrorism Unit Thomas Dodd with Güvenç, ended with senior U.K. officials telling British citizens that "Turkey is safe for travel as a tourist."

Marriott said, "Our citizens can comfortably travel to cities of Turkey, except those near the Syrian border." Despite the ongoing terror threats caused by the PKK, DAESH and the Revolutionary Peoples Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C) terrorist organizations, Turkey is among the preferred countries for cruise tourism, and over the past five years, 10,207,364 passengers have visited the country on 7,593 cruises.

Throughout the Brexit debates, British Prime Minister David Cameron dismissed the idea that Turkey would join the EU bloc any time soon, joking that its current progress toward accession meant that it would not become a member until the year 3000. Despite this, Marriott stressed that "close relations with Turkey are to continue." During the closed-door meeting, Turkish and U.K. officials agreed to share information and intelligence regarding efforts to combat terrorism.

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