Turkish nationals passports confiscated across Europe for social media activity
Turkish nationals living in Switzerland are having their passports confiscated by the country’s diplomatic missions – meaning they’re unable to travel.
There are two known cases so far, but reports suggest the same is happening across Europe.
A 33-year-old woman in Basel says she went to the consulate in Zurich for a routine request and was told she wouldn’t be getting her documents back and that she was wanted in Turkey for criminal offences. She has Kurdish roots and was born in Switzerland.
The same thing happened to a 26-year-old woman in Bern.
It seems Turkish officials are monitoring social media activity and are hunting their nationals abroad who post negative comments about the country’s leadership and policies.
Both women complain they’re not getting help from Bern.
The Swiss foreign ministry says the withdrawal of passports is the responsibility of the issuing country.
Turkish officials are refusing to comment.