By Joe Anuta, Jason Beeferman and Maya Kaufman
NEW YORK (Politico) — As Brooklyn borough president, Eric Adams attended nearly 80 events over eight years to celebrate Turkey — including a flag-raising in 2015, a charity ball in 2018 and a Zoom meeting with the Turkish consul in 2020.
In 2019, as he was embarking on a run for New York City mayor, he joined Martha Stewart at a gala celebrating Turkish Airlines — a company now caught up in an ongoing FBI probe into Adams’ campaign finances. At the event, Adams was photographed holding hands with two company officials over a sheet cake; after winning the mayor’s race, he appointed one of those officials — Cenk Öcal — to his transition team.
And after assuming the mayoralty last year, Adams delivered virtual remarks at a real estate conference in Istanbul, which was attended by two top city officials.
“Like New York City, Turkey has always been a crossroads of many cultures and a dynamic place to do business,” Adams said during his remarks, which were left off his daily public schedule and have never been reported.
These revelations — uncovered through a POLITICO review of thousands of pages of public schedules from his time as borough president and reams of social media posts — shed light on Adams’ unusually strong relationship with Turkey, which has drawn scrutiny from federal investigators. The FBI is looking for evidence the mayor’s 2021 campaign colluded with the Turkish government and accepted illegal campaign contributions.