Turkey expanding its prisons; U.S. lawmakers demand investigation into Turkish drones

WASHINGTON, D.C. / ANKARA — Foreign Policy magazine revealed that the Turkish government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has spent nearly 13 billion liras to build 131 prisons over the past five years. According to the report, Ankara is planning an additional 100 detention centers, a sign that the government has no intention of easing its repression of political opponents.

The number of prisoners rose to about 300,000 in 2019.

The Nordic Monitor has reported on multiple occasions the brutal torture and human rights violations that take place in Turkish prisons and detention centers.

Turkish foreign and domestic policy continues to alienate its neighbors and allies.

The Arab Parliamentary Union condemned the aggressive Turkish practices targeting regions of Syria, especially cutting off water from Hasakah and its villages, which portends a humanitarian and health catastrophe. The Union demanded the Turkish state to end these violations and called on the international community to end this human catastrophe.

U.S. lawmakers called on the U.S. State Department to suspend licenses to export U.S. drone technology to Turkey and called for a formal investigation into the destabilizing role of Turkish drone programs in the Caucasus, South Asia, eastern Mediterranean, and elsewhere.

In a letter to Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, the House of Representatives requested a report on the fallout from Turkey’s drone industry, paying particular attention to whether it includes U.S. technologies.