Turkish Presidency has ‘just the right number of planes,’ assures Communications Center

Turkey’s Presidential Communications Center (CİMER) has responded to a 2022 question by the daily BirGün about the number of planes and helicopters owned by the Presidency that it had “just the necessary number of vehicles.” 

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan takes questions from journalists on a presidential plane

Duvar English

Turkey’s Presidential Communications Center (CİMER) on Feb. 19 stated that the Presidency owned “just the necessary number of vehicles” in response to a 2022 question submitted by the daily BirGün inquiring about the number of planes and helicopters owned by the Turkish Presidency, according to recent reporting. 

The response came 17 months later and read, “The presidency inventory holds just the necessary number of vehicles all of which are used in the most fitting manners for the services of our state.” 

The reply did not specify the number of private planes or helicopters owned by the presidential office. 

CİMER is a system where citizens can submit inquiries and complaints to the office of the Presidency. The office is required to respond to the submissions in 30 business days. 

The assets of the Presidential office have been a topic of controversy since its inception in 2015. The presidential fleet came under scrutiny, especially after the wildfires of 2021 when Turkey had to resort to foreign assistance as firefighting efforts fell short. 

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has admitted that the country does not even have a single firefighting plane to fight the massive ongoing wildfires.

Former leader of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu had emphasized President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s lavish presidential facilities and fleet.

As a presidential candidate for the 2023 elections, Kılıçdaroğlu had promised to sell the 16-plane presidential fleet to buy firefighting planes. 

Then-Industry and Technology Minister Mustafa Varank had denied that the Presidency had 16 planes, but the information was later corroborated by the Airline Workers’ Union.