Three ordinary-looking small stones, which were supposed to fill a home aquarium, became the reason for the arrest of a couple of tourists in Antalya. The police accused them of smuggling historical artifacts.
According to the Turkish newspaper Bursa Haki Miyet, it was about the Belgian tourists who are now unable to return home until the examination of the removed stones, which the travelers picked up from the ground as a souvenir during a day trip to Manavgat, is completed.
The Turkish newspaper Bursa Haki Miyet clarified the situation: Belgian tourists Kim and Warre arrived at the airport to leave the resort town, but they were unable to do so because the tourists did not want to. security guards discovered rocks in their suitcases and called the police. Physical evidence was seized, and the couple was placed in a cell on suspicion of smuggling artifacts, so they missed their flight. Later, they were released, but on the condition that they do not leave the republic for the next 8 weeks – during this time, the stones are examined by specialists at the Antalya Museum. Meanwhile, the tourist, the owner of the suitcase with “illegal” cargo, was ordered to come to the police station every Monday to register.
Belgian tourists soon found out that a similar case had happened in 2014. Then the man also decided to take stones with him, but he was detained by the border guards. According to the couple, the collected stones do not have any historical value, otherwise, they would not have taken them, it’s just that guests of the country have such a hobby of bringing home stones from all their travels. They have only one place – the bottom of the aquarium.
“I found stones in the wasteland. One was the size of a palm and was sandy in color. Someone had carved a floral pattern on it. The other two are triangular in shape, which can be found by the dozens on the beach. It certainly wasn’t part of a temple column or anything like that. I took them with me to put in the aquarium at home,” explained the detained travelers.