Ankara, September 5, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Manolis Kostidis
The Turkish State confiscated USD 4 billion-worth real-estate
Gulen had activities everywhere
The arrests of tens of thousands of Turkish citizens on suspicion and charges of being affiliated with the Islamic order of Imam Fethullah Gulen continues unabated. Gulen is being accused of having organized the attempted coup of July 15 against Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Government.
But this manhunt has serious effects on the turkish economy as dozens of groups of companies are being confiscated by the Turkish government, while bank accounts of businessmen freeze. At the same time, thousands of properties are seized in one day on charges of affiliations with the terrorist organization FETO.
Typical of all this is the statement of the Turkish Environment Minister Mehmet Ozhaseki, who revealed that to date have been confiscated by the Turkish state properties worth 12 billion Turkish lira (3.8 billion Euro). “So far the Turkish government has seized 2514 properties. 2083 more have been transferred to Vakufion administration, while the transfer of 1148 other properties to third parties have been frozen. As such, all these properties have now been registered as public property that belongs to the people”.
Turkish Trade Minister Bulent Tufekci argued that “the terrorist organization FETO has least 250 companies. All these will be closed. There are also other companies that help transfer money to the organization, all these companies will be closed”.
A typical example is the BOYDAK group which grew and became of the largest groups in the last 15 years of AKP’s rule. The owners were arrested on charges of financial assistance to Gulen and the group is being managed by a guardian appointed by the state.
The group operates in 8 different sectors with 41 companies, such as steel, power, but also owns the furniture manufacturing company Istikbal.
Two other large groups such as Kaynak and Naksan are being accused of relations with Gulen. Both groups are managed by trustees of the state and their property will remain under state control until the judicial adventure of their owners is completed.
Hundreds of other companies belonging to the Gulen or owners who helped him financially close down or are being confiscated by court order.
Bankers in Turkey are concerned about these developments and have asked from the Turkish government to clarify the financial landscape and the groups that operate under public control to be sold rapidly to other groups. Naksan group alone, which has passed under state control has bank loans of more than USD 300 million.
Also properties of 1100 institutions, private schools and universities that had relations with Gulen have all passed in public hands.
The daily Hurriyet speaks of the biggest change of assets in Turkey since the Varlik Vergisi (occupation tax) which was imposed on non-Muslim citizens in 1940 and those who could not afford this heavy tax lost their properties.
According to television network NTV, the tax authorities in cooperation with prosecutors conduct investigations in 8000 companies to find items that might incriminate their owners with regard to their relationship with the organization FETO.
Even before the coup attempt the government had seized the media companies that had relations with the Gulen as daily Zaman, Samanyolu TV network and Asya Bank. After the attempted coup these companies were closed.
The Turkish press estimates that with the bank deposits and the value of the companies seized the Turkish state may acquire a property of over USD 50 billion that belonged to entrepreneurs associated with FETO!