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The current Turkish deployment to Qatar is not the first. In 1872, 100 Turkish troops and field guns were landed in Doha, launching a military presence that was to remain for 44 years. Some years ago, GSN is told, a number of soldiers’ bodies were discovered on wasteland behind Doha Fort, a former Ottoman garrison. Local historians say the death rate from disease among Ottoman soldiers was appallingly high, at around 40%; scurvy was rife among troops who didn’t even have a vegetable garden to tend until 1910.
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