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Turkish migration

In the late 1950s, Western European countries experienced an economic boom and required foreign labor. In this context, an agreement was signed in 1961 between the Turkish and West German governments. Between 1961 and 1974 around 750 000 Turkish people arrived in Germany as so-called “guest workers”. However, many Turks decided to stay and migration continued in the form of a family reunion. Nowadays, around 2.7 million Turks are living in Germany, which makes them the largest ethnic minority group.


The coup d'etat in 1980 brought the National Armed Forces to power and the subsequent era was shaped by political violence and persecution, especially of Kurdish citizens. Hence, many leftist and Kurdish Turks left for Western Europe. The most important destinations for Turks include Germany, France, Netherlands, the UK, and Austria.

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