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Turkey's earthquake victims hit by exorbitant rent spikes, topping 60%

Turkey’s Justice Ministry is working on a draft amendment that would introduce jail terms of two to five years for landlords gouging prices in times of natural disasters.
Hairdressers give haircuts to people displaced by the earthquake at tent camp on February 19, 2023 in Hatay, Turkey. A 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit near Gaziantep, Turkey, in the early hours of February 6, followed by another 7.5-magnitude tremor just after midday. The quakes caused widespread destruction in southern Turkey and northern Syria and has killed more than 40,000 people. (Photo by Burak Kara/Getty Images)

ANKARA — An exodus from Turkey’s quake-ravaged southeastern provinces has sent rent prices soaring in regions where hundreds of thousands of quake victims now seek new homes, prompting Ankara to draw up a bill introducing jail terms for gouging landlords.

The price surge comes atop an already acute housing crisis in Turkey, where overall rents increased nearly 173% last year, according to a study by BETAM, an Istanbul-based think-tank.

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