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Former confidant’s last exposé accuses Erdoğan and family of rampant corruption

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In the final installment of a series of explosive videos that have riveted the nation, Ali Yeşildağ, a former confidant of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has made further allegations of corruption, implicating Erdoğan and his family in a web of deceit and malfeasance.

In the video titled “Tayyip Abi ile Düello,” [Duel with Brother Tayyip] released by investigative journalist Cevheri Güven, Yeşildağ alleges that Erdoğan has orchestrated a widespread scheme of corruption that siphons off public funds for personal gain. Yeşildağ claims that Erdoğan and his son, Bilal Erdoğan, hold key stakes in businesses that receive lucrative government contracts.

Yeşildağ further accuses Erdoğan of personal ownership of İstanbul Airport. Atatürk was the primary airport in İstanbul before the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) built a third airport in the city. Atatürk was closed to civilian flights on April 7, 2019, with the opening of the larger, $12 billion İstanbul Airport, though with much controversy. Later, the government decided to build a pandemic hospital at the old airport, destroying two runways in the process.

In the video, Yeşildağ alleges that Erdoğan destroyed the Atatürk Airport runways due to pledges by opposition figures to close İstanbul Airport and reopen Atatürk. According to Yeşildağ, this is due to Erdoğan’s ownership of the facility, so he destroyed the alternative to make İstanbul Airport the only option for the public.

Yeşildağ also criticizes the alleged misuse of public funds for projects such as the “nation’s garden” and various other building plans. He suggests that all public contracts are given to companies that can offer kickbacks to Erdoğan, alleging that the president, despite not being an economist, is very adept at exploiting the system for personal gain.

These allegations represent the latest in a series of claims made by Yeşildağ, whose prior videos have implicated Erdoğan in corruption involving billions of dollars as well as shedding light on the president’s unconfirmed epilepsy.

In the video Yeşildağ also takes aim at Erdoğan’s brother, Mustafa, accusing him of hypocrisy and scandalous behavior. He asserts that the Erdoğan family is out of touch with the struggles of ordinary Turkish people, contrasting their affluent lifestyle with the economic hardships faced by many in the country.

The Yeşildağ family has a longstanding relationship with Erdoğan. The family’s Etiler Ulus Cafe is known as a popular meeting spot for the AKP government and state bureaucracy as well as the Erdoğan family.

The video series has ignited public discourse, potentially destabilizing Erdoğan’s administration, which is already grappling with an economic crisis and high inflation. The exposés come ahead of the parliamentary and presidential elections, increasing the scrutiny on Erdoğan’s leadership.

In the face of these damning allegations, the Turkish government has yet to issue a formal response.

With the release of the final video, Yeşildağ’s exposé series draws to a dramatic close, leaving behind a trail of explosive allegations that have laid bare alleged corruption and misconduct in the highest echelons of Turkish politics.

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