Duvar EnglishTurkey to build two pandemic hospitals in Istanbul
Satellite images taken near Istanbul's Atatürk Airport showed that a pandemic hospital is being built on a land near the now-unused airport and not on it, refuting President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's previous statements.
Speaking after a cabinet meeting, Erdoğan on April 6 said that a hospital with a 1,000 bed capacity will be constructed and opened in 45 days on Atatürk Airport, which was closed to domestic and international commercial passenger flights last year.
Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu and satellite images, however, refuted Erdoğan's remarks, with the opposition mayor saying that the hospital is being constructed on the land belonging to General Directorate of National Estate.
"Construction began on the 50,000-meter-square land," İmamoğlu said in an interview.
Satellite images taken by The Independent's Turkish service showed construction ongoing on the land next to the airport.
Turkey reported its first coronavirus case on March 11 and the death toll is above 700 as of April 7.
The idea to turn Atatürk Airport into a hospital has been coming up on social media since the start of the pandemic.