German MPs to visit base after Turkey lifts ban

The German parliament in June joined more than 20 countries in recognising the Ottoman Empire's World War I-era massacre of Armenians as a genocide, prompting fury from Ankara.

German MPs to visit base after Turkey lifts ban

World Bulletin / News Desk

Six German lawmakers will visit a key airbase in Turkey on Wednesday, a Turkish official told AFP, as the NATO allies seek to move on from a bitter diplomatic row.

Turkey promptly banned German lawmakers from visiting the Incirlik base in southern Turkey, where Germany has around 240 troops as part of the international coalition fighting the Islamic State group across the border in Syria.

A furious President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also accused German lawmakers of Turkish origin who voted in favour of the resolution of having "tainted blood".

Ankara gave the green light last month for the visit to go ahead only after German Chancellor Angela Merkel's government clarified publicly that the Armenia resolution was "not legally binding".

"Six German MPs will visit Incirlik air base on Wednesday," the official said Monday on condition of anonymity.

Armenians say up to 1.5 million were killed between 1915 and 1917 as the Ottoman Empire was falling apart. 

Turkey rejects the claims, arguing that 300,000 to 500,000 Armenians and as many Turks died in civil strife when Armenians rose up against their Ottoman rulers and sided with invading Russian troops.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 03 Ekim 2016, 14:49
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