British tourists have been warned to “remain vigilant” if visiting Turkey, after protests have broken out following a US air strike on neighbouring Iran.
The attack killed Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in Baghdad on 3 January and the incident has led to increased tensions in the region.
Is Turkey safe to visit?
Despite an outbreak of protests across Iran, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has stressed that it is still safe for British tourists to holiday in Turkey, but warned visitors to be vigilant.
The east of Turkey shares a border with Iran, although most British tourists visit the north of the country, heading to popular holiday spots including Bodrum, Antalya and Istanbul, which are currently largely without incident.
However, the UK government says that tourists attacks in Turkey remain “very likely”, following a shooting in an Istanbul nightclub in 2017 which killed 39 people.
Protests have broken out across Iran following a US air strike which killed Iranian General Qasem Soleimani (Photo: Getty Images)
Advice for tourists
The FCO has urged tourists to follow the latest travel advice and keep up to date with developments in the country via the media.
The FCO said: “Following the death of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in a US strike in Baghdad on 3 January, the incident has led to increased tensions in the region.
“There is a possibility of an increased threat against Western interests and the security situation could worsen with little warning.
“You should remain vigilant and keep up to date with the latest developments, including via the media and this travel advice.”
The FCO advise against all travel to areas within 10 km of the border with Syria, except the city of Kilis, and warns against all but essential travel to:
all other areas of Sirnak, Kilis (including Kilis city) and Hatay provincesthe provinces of Diyarbakir, Tunceli and Hakkari
British nationals need a visa to travel to Turkey and should carry their passport and a printed copy of their e-visa (if applicable), or residence permit, at all times.
In some busy areas, especially Istanbul, the Turkish authorities are stopping members of the public to conduct ID checks.
Tourists can contact the emergency services by calling 155 (police), 112 (ambulance) and 110 (fire).
The advice, which hasn’t strictly changed since October last year, has also been issued to tourists visiting Egypt and Dubai.