Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Turkey Shoots Itself In The Foot

Prime Minister Erdogan may see bashing Israel as an easy way to get into the good graces of the Islamists, but there are consequences:
The Turkish tourism industry has been seriously affected by the recent tension between former allies Turkey and Israel. The Turkish economy has lost at least $400 million due to reservation cancellations from Israeli tourists, according to tourism agencies.

Some 50,000 Israelis have cancelled their reservations indefinitely. Furthermore, the Israel Travel Agents Association has announced that it cancelled 100,000 reservations out of a total of 150,000.

The cancellations, which came after Israeli soldiers killed eight Turkish citizens and a American of Turkish origins on an aid ship headed toward the Gaza Strip, have created a $400 million loss for the economy. Tour operators in Turkey said they want to recoup their losses.

Levantin Tour, a tourism company has posted a 3.5 million Turkish Liras loss due to cancelled reservations, according to the owner of the company, Levent Güner. Levantin Tour has been bringing tourists from Israel to Turkey for the past 15 years.

“Our company’s main business channel has been cut,” Güner said. “Who will retrieve my 3.5 million-lira loss?”
Gee, how about a Turkey Tourism Flotilla!

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