Fleeing Turkey: the grey passport scandal

Turkish media report that hundreds of Turkish citizens who entered Germany visa-free using grey "service passports" have since gone into hiding there. In one case, a businessman from Hanover acted as the inviter and four civil servants in the AKP-ruled province of Malatya have been suspended for their complicity. The fugitives are said to have paid up to 8,000 euros for the grey passports.

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Karar (TR) /

People just want to get out

The affair puts Turkey in a very bad light, Karar explains:

“According to studies, 45 percent of young people - and according to some surveys as much as 75 percent of them - see their future abroad and want to study, work or simply live abroad if they get the chance. A grey passport would suffice for this. Our normal passports are practically worthless, but our grey passports are very valuable, no one can deny that! Isn't it scary to live in a country where women and men are so desperate that they consider becoming refugees, and even young people are looking for a way to leave?”

Sözcü (TR) /

Who is envious of whom here?

It's astonishing that AKP officials are helping AKP supporters to flee, mocks the opposition Sözcü:

“People smuggling wasn't on the AKP's list of activities before, but now the time has come! ... [The AKP-led government] had told us that the economy was doing well, we were developing quickly, unemployment was falling, we were going to fly to the moon and send a human into space! Poor Germany couldn't but be envious of us! But a funny thing happened. Forty-three AKP members have fled to Germany, which is envious of us! ... The AKP-led Malatya Yeşilyurt municipal government issued grey passports to 47 party members for a study trip. The convoy entered Germany without visas, but of the 47 AKP members only 4 have returned! ... This will go down as a bad mark in the party's report.”