The Turks аre angry: Erdogan built a summer barn for 62m euros
The Turkish opposition accuses President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of wasting taxpayers’ money – at a time of high inflation and unemployment. The reason for the harsh criticism is the summer palace of the president of the Aegean Sea, which was built in recent years, but about which the public did not know much, reports “Süddeutsche Zeitung”.
This is a complex with 300 rooms in the holiday province of Marmaris. Now the government-critical newspaper Sözcü publishes photos of the palace, as well as sketches from architect Shefik Birkie’s website.
According to the newspaper, the barn cost 640 million pounds (about 62 million euros). It consists of many luxury two-storey buildings with study and living rooms, as well as bedrooms in neo-Ottoman style, rooms for staff, a mosque, swimming pool and a long private beach by the sea.
The Turkish president is said to have already received two state guests at the complex last year: According to Sözcü, both Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama and Azerbaijani President Ilhan Aliyev visited the Summer Palace.
Special sand for the private beach
The facility was built in a bay where Turgut Ozal, a former Turkish president, also lived in a holiday home in the 1990s. But it was a small house that had to give way to the new facility – as well as tens of thousands of trees that were cut down in the bay.
According to the author of Sözcü, Ismail Shahin, an area of almost 11,000 square meters has been turned into a beach, for which special sand and gravel had to be transported from a lake 200 km away.
Following the publication in the newspaper, the sketches could no longer be found on the website of the architect Birkie. Now, however, Sözcü is also publishing photos of the palace. Sözcü author Chikdem Toker commented on the disappearance of the sketches, pointing out that transparency regarding the living standards of those who run the country would actually be a good thing. Ultimately, this would show what the budget will be spent on at a time when inflation is rising, livelihoods are declining for many and the number of suicides due to poverty is rising.
The leader of the opposition Republican People’s Party, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, made a similar statement. Speaking in front of his party’s faction in parliament, he showed enlarged photos of the palace and criticized the president: “A man builds a summer palace while people are starving.”
HDP MP Garo Paylan also criticized Erdogan on Twitter. “While the Erdogans are telling the citizens, ‘Let’s cut the portions,’ they are building a summer palace with a budget of 640 million.” People are hungry, committing suicide … they don’t care. ” He is apparently referring to a statement by Erdogan’s wife, Emine, who recommended that Turks eat smaller portions so that nothing is thrown away.
The opposition is now calling for clarification on the construction of the summer palace – especially on the complex creation of the beach. So far, the government has not responded to publications in the Sözcü newspaper, unlike some media outlets that have further developed them. Only media close to the government tried to justify the investment – the new building was needed to protect the president from attacks ?!
Following heavy criticism, President Erdogan recently issued a rescue decree aimed at halting the purchase of expensive company cars. However, he had excluded his own office from this.