Over 100 Turkish defence engineers move to Netherlands

İlhami Özcan Aygun, a deputy for the Turkish main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), said over 100 Turkish defence engineers had moved to the Netherlands due to growing influence of religious sects in the defence industry, Cumhuriyet reported on Sunday.

İlhami Özcan Aygun, a deputy for the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), said over 100 defence engineers had been transferred to Dutch ASML company.

Engineers working for Turkey’s Defence Industries Research and Development Institute (SAGE), Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI), and ASELSAN, a company of the Turkish Armed Forces Foundation, “escaped” from their companies after members of a religious sect were appointed to important positions, Aygun said.

The reason behind the brain drain in Turkey’s defence industry is the appointment of several members of Hayra Davet Foundation, the opposition deputy said, adding that 20 managers were fired from ASELSAN recently.

Transfer of engineers also jeopardises the success of Turkey’s strategic defence projects, he said.