Does My Son Need to Serve in the Turkish Military After He Gains Turkish Citizenship?

Does My Son Need to Serve in the Turkish Military After He Gains Turkish Citizenship?

Turkish Military After Citizenship

This article explains the question; “Does my son need to serve in the Turkish military after he gains Turkish citizenship?” in detail. Turkey is a country of rich heritage. The history and culture of the country are such that millions of travelers from all over the world visit Turkey every year to reminisce about its beauty. Many travelers from around the world fall in love with the country so much that often they plan to settle down in Turkey with their families. But if they decide to obtain Turkish citizenship, does their son have to serve in the Turkish military after citizenship?

If you have never been to Turkey, do visit once to experience the magic because if you do visit, you will certainly never want to go back ever again. But there is a mandatory military service agreement in Turkey. If you want to settle in Turkey and citizenship, do you or your son have to serve the Turkish military?

Related Article: How to Get a Residence Permit in Turkey?

Is Military Service Mandatory in Turkey?

If you are planning to move to Turkey permanently, and obtain Turkish citizenship, you need to be aware that all men above the age of 18, till the age of 40, must serve in the Turkish military. Military service in Turkey is a compulsory service for the male citizens of the country. The military service in Turkey has always been held with high honor amongst the citizens of the country. It plays a very significant role in the history and culture of Turkey.

Such is the significance of military service in Turkey that when a new adult male receives his call letter from the military, his family and friends arrange for celebrations amongst themselves. Of course, there are at present, discussions in progress that will lift the obligation of mandatory military service in Turkey.

This is all about the Turkish male citizens but what about the foreigners who choose to apply for Turkish citizenship? Do they also have to serve the Turkish military mandatorily? Let’s find that out in this article.

Related Article: Residence Permit in Turkey: A Comprehensive Guide.

Do Turkish Citizens of Foreign Origin Need to Serve the Military Mandatorily?

As per the declaration by the Department of Recruitment in Turkey, which is directly attached to the Ministry of Defense, foreigners and Turkish origin males, but a citizen of another country are exempted from the military service in Turkey if they are more than 22 years of age. You will be evaluated as per the group of people you belong to and the rules that are laid about such groups.

For instance, if you are more than 22 years of age on the date you become a Turkish citizen, you become automatically exempted from the mandatory Turkish military service. This is also true for foreigners who gain Turkish citizenship by marrying a Turkish person.

Does My Son Need to Serve in the Turkish Military After He Gains Turkish Citizenship?

The people who remain in the immigrant status as per the date of their entry in Turkey are however not exempted from military service in Turkey unless they are more than 22 years of age. If you have already served your home country’s military service and then have applied for Turkish citizenship, in that case too, you are exempted from mandatory military service.

You have to provide official documentation mentioning that you have already served the military in your home country. This law, however, only covers some of the Middle East countries like; Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, etc., where mostly Turkish origin people are found usually.

In the Case of Multiple Citizenships, Do You Have to Serve the Turkish Military?

Turkey has special agreements with certain countries. As per these agreements, in the case of multiple citizenships, exemption from military services in Turkey is available. In principle, foreigners who have multiple citizenship must fulfill their military obligation in their home country mandatorily.

If a Turkish-origin foreigner fulfills his military obligation in a different country, he would still need to mandatorily serve the Turkish military after he applies for Turkish citizenship in the country.

General Acquisition of Turkish Citizenship for Foreigners

As a person of foreign origin, if you wish to acquire Turkish citizenship, you have to fulfill certain conditions laid down by Turkish law. The conditions are:

  • You have to be an adult,
  • Have to be a legal resident of Turkey without interruption for at least five years before applying for Turkish citizenship. You can stay abroad for no more than six months within those five years of residence in Turkey,
  • You have to verify your intention of staying in Turkey by making certain investments in the country. The minimum investment amount is $250,000,
  • You should be of sound physical and mental health,
  • You should be of good character morally,
  • You should be able to speak Turkish to a sufficient level,
  • You must be able to sustain yourself and your dependents in Turkey with your monthly income,
  • You must not have any past criminal records in your name,


Although Turkey allows multiple citizenships, foreigners might have to relinquish their national citizenship. This decision remains at the discretion of the Council of Ministers in Turkey. This law is especially true for the citizens of some countries that do not accept dual citizenship.

Any foreigner that fulfills the above-mentioned conditions do not automatically get Turkish citizenship. The commissions in the provinces of Turkey will conduct examinations to check whether the foreign applicant is eligible for acquiring Turkish citizenship.

Once the examination is over, the application file is sent to the Ministry of Interior Affairs that reviews the application. Finally, the decision is informed to the applicant via mail.

Is there Any Exceptional Acquisition of Turkish Citizenship Available?

Yes, as per the Turkish citizenship law, the Council of Ministers may allow foreigners to receive rewards in the event of exceptional achievements. Any foreigner who brought great achievements for Turkey in the field of; artistic, technological, or scientific achievements can get a waiver for residence and other preconditions while applying for Turkish citizenship.

Foreigners can also choose to opt for Turkish citizenship by investment. Other conditions that you need to fulfill if you wish to get exceptional acquisition of Turkish citizenship are:

  • If you play an important role in bringing an industrial plant in Turkey or render any outstanding service in the fields of; art, sports, technology, sports, or culture,
  • If you have been recognized as a migrant,
  • This is also applicable for people whose naturalization has been necessary for the recent past,
  • The only condition that you must fulfill in this case is to have a clean police record,


Related Article: Turkish Citizenship By Real Estate: New Rules and Steps.

If you need further information on the matter, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Also, if you need legal aid in Turkey with your legal affairs, our law firm in Turkey can help you.

This article was published on 08.04.2020 and last edited on 17.08.2021. Images used in this article have been taken from free image-sharing services on the internet. Also, in this article, which is called; “Does My Son Need to Serve in the Turkish Military After He Gains Turkish Citizenship?” information freely shared on the internet was used. We make every effort to offer accurate and current information. However, please do let us know if you find any errors in this article.