Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has said that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been accumulating assets in the United States because if there is a turn of events, he and his family will leave Turkey and settle in the U.S.
“They bought Muhammed Ali’s farm in Michigan because they know that if the period changes, they will all go to the U.S. They are accumulating their assets there. Isn’t the unearned income you made in Turkey enough?” Kılıçdaroğlu said on July 14, during his party’s group parliamentary meeting.
The Chicago Tribune reported last year that the Erdoğan-linked Türken Foundation purchased a 81-acre estate belonging to the late boxer Muhammed Ali and his wife on the St. Joseph River in southwest Michigan.
The New York-based Türken Foundation is known to be run by people close to Erdoğan, including his family. “They have given up on accumulating assets in Turkey but are now involved in building a skyscraper in Manhattan. They are building skyscraper in New York, Manhattan,” Kılıçdaroğlu said.
The CHP leader also said that Erdoğan could not stand up against the U.S. as there is the “threat” of his financial assets being investigated in the country.
In February, it came to light that the Türken Foundation was building a 21-storey student dormitory in Manhattan. The foundation said at the time that the construction was financed through a $8 million worth donation made by Başkentgaz, the natural gas distributor in Ankara. The CHP however said that there was no record of this $8 million donation reaching the Türken Foundation.
In April, the CHP submitted a parliamentary motion calling for an investigation into the sources of donations made to the Türken Foundation.