Sunday, July 21, 2013

Turkey: Foreign Tourists Sexually Assaulted in Separate Incidents in Marmaris

According to The Daily Mail, two Turkish men have been arrested in separate sexual attacks on British women in the seaside resort of Marmaris.

A British tourist, 28, claims to have awoken in the early morning hours to a see man standing at the end of her bed holding a knife. Local police say he was planning to burglarize the woman's apartment, but after seeing her half naked in bed, he instead attempted to rape her.  Subsequently, the victim,  who lives and works in Turkey, fought off her assailant, biting his fingers and drawing blood. She managed to flee to the bathroom and locked herself inside. Hearing her screams, neighbors came to her aid and caught the man as he attempted to flee.

In the second attack, a British tourist, 21, reported that she was raped by a taxi driver because she did not have the money to pay the fare after she took a cab back to her hotel after a night out on the town. When the driver realized she could not pay the fare, he drove off with her still in the car to a secluded location where she agreed to let him kiss and fondle her, as she feared for her life. Unfortunately, the driver then drove to another location where he raped her. She later filed a rape charge against the taxi driver, although he alleged that their sexual encounter was consensual. He was released on bail while police investigate the matter.

COMMENT: Both of these incidents raise key lessons-learned in the hope of avoiding similar events: 

British victim, age 28: Expats should be exceptionally careful in selecting an apartment. The fact that a burglar or intruder could gain access to an apartment so easily suggests that the apartment did not have adequate exterior door security. Expats should ensure that their exterior apartment door is of solid construction and equipped with an optical viewer and deadbolt lock. Additionally, apartments should be selected that are between the third and sixth floors, so as to prevent intruders from gaining access through low-rise balconies, sliding glass doors, etc. 

British victim, age 21: The lesson-learned in this case is always carry sufficient cash in a concealed place on your person so that you can comfortably pay the taxi fare to your hotel, so as to avoid being raped in lieu of local currency. 

As I emphasize in my 2008 book, STAYING SAFE ABROAD: TRAVELING, WORKING AND LIVING IN A POST-9/11 WORLD, it is essential that foreign travelers review the security situation in the country of their destination at the on-line site of their appropriate foreign affairs agency, so as to be well-prepared for local security threats and potential calamities. 

FYI: The 2013 complete update of STAYING SAFE ABROAD will be thoroughly updated and available in formatting for the iPad, Kindle and Nook in November 2013. See 

Marmaris is a port town and tourist resort on the Mediterranean coast, located in Muğla Province, southwest Turkey, along the shoreline of the Turkish Riviera. Marmaris' main source of income is tourism. Marmaris still retains its charm due to its exceptional location between two intersecting sets of mountains by the sea. As of 2010, the town's population was 30,957, peaking at around 300,000 to 400,000 people during the tourism season. Marmaris' nightlife rivals anything on the Turkish coast.