Court rejects pro-Erdoğan foundation’s lawsuit against Istanbul Municipality

A court has rejected a lawsuit filed by TÜGVA in a case concerning its refusal to evacuate an Istanbul Municipality-owned area on Büyükada.

On Oct. 6, 2021, the police had prevented the Istanbul Municipality employees from carrying out a court-ordered eviction of the top floor of Büyükada Pier.

Duvar English 

A court has rejected a lawsuit filed by the Turkey Youth Foundation (TÜGVA) against Istanbul Municipality over the control of an area on Büyükada, the largest of the Princes Islands.

TÜGVA, an Islamist foundation which has President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's son Bilal Erdoğan on its advisory board, will not appeal the court's decision and will evacuate the municipality-owned hall located on the upper floor of the Büyükada Pier, daily Birgün reported on Jan. 27, citing a column of Halk TV journalist İsmail Saymaz. 

In 2018, the area was leased to the TÜGVA for a period of 10 years. On Feb. 7, 2020, the Istanbul Municipality determined that the TÜGVA had illegally subleased the area, in contravention of the agreements, therefore ordering the foundation to evacuate the space. When the foundation rejected this, the case was taken to the judiciary, with an administrative court ruling in favor of the municipality.

Despite the court's order, TÜGVA has been refusing the evacuate the area and even got the support of the police. On Oct. 6, 2021, the municipal police ("zabıta") were prevented by the police to enter the premises. 

The foundation later took the case to the Adalar (Islands) Penal Court of Peace, demanding the cancellation of the eviction order. 

On Jan. 18, the court dismissed the foundation's lawsuit and ruled in favor the municipality.