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Turkish court sentences German national to 6 years on terrorism charges

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The German foreign ministry on Friday said it was providing consular services to a German man who was sentenced by a Turkish court to six years, three months in prison on charges of membership in a terrorist organization, Reuters reported.

A defense ministry spokesman said the man, identified in German media as 29-year-old Patrick K., was also given a suspended sentence for entering a prohibited military zone.

“It is a decision of the Turkish justice system,” the spokesman told a government news conference. “We assume that he will, as appropriate, and with his Turkish attorneys, make use of the legal options available under Turkish law.”

Five German nationals are currently detained in Turkey for political reasons, the spokesman said, but he declined to say whether Germany regarded this conviction as political.

The Turkish prosecutor accused Patrick K. of membership in the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), considered by Ankara to be a branch of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has waged a three-decade insurgency in Turkey’s largely Kurdish Southeast, German newspaper Die Welt reported.

His family said he was in Turkey on a hiking holiday, according to Die Welt.

The reported court decision comes ahead of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s arrival in Turkey on Saturday for an international summit on Syria hosted by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

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