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HASANKEYF should be a symbol of unity for ALL Kurds

A place for discussion and exchanging ideas about Kurdistan issues here, also a place for sharing article & views and analysis about Kurdistan .

Re: Save HASANKEYF occupy CAVES protect countries downriver

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sun Feb 16, 2020 1:21 am

Last Call for Hasankeyf
and the Tigris Valley


Hasankeyf Coordination has held a statement for the press about the ancient city of Hasankeyf and the Tigris Valley, which are soon to be entirely engulfed by the Ilısu Dam

Meeting in the Union of Chambers of Turkish Engineers and Architects (TMMOB) Chamber of Mechanical Engineers İstanbul Office yesterday (February 13), the Coordination expressed their last warning about the impending destruction of the ancient city and its surrounding area as the water reservoir of the dam has been constantly growing.

Hasankeyf must continue living

Taking the floor first in the meeting, Prof. Beyza Üstün from the Peoples' Democratic Congress (DTK) read out the statement for the press on behalf of Hasankeyf Coordination. Entitled "The Last Call for Hasankeyf and Tigris Valley", the statement highlighted the following points:

    "As the gates of the dam, which must not be closed, started to be closed in July 2019, Tigris River and Tigris Valley, which are living beings, have started to be destroyed. As no warnings were made about the closure of the gates, several people suffered and as the rising waters reached villages, several inhabitants had to emigrate without even taking their possessions with them. One person died by drowning in the dam reservoir.

    "As four new settlements have been built by the State Hydraulic Works (DSİ) for the 80 villages to be completely engulfed and 124 villages to be partly engulfed, tens of thousands of people have started to emigrate to Siirt, Batman, Diyarbakır and other big cities with the meagre compensation that they could receive. Over ten thousand "landless" people have been emigrating without any compensation at all.
Stop the project of destruction immediately

    "When we look at all areas of destruction and devastation, new settlements have been built in only a few of the 80 villages left homeless, only 7 of thousands of historical artefacts have been relocated, of 289 mounds, only the Hasankeyf Mound has been covered with concrete, only a few nesting areas have been formed for hundreds of endemic species facing extinction.

    "The waters are rising and the dam reservoir is destroying everything on its way. This dam is a dam that will keep on destroying all through its lifetime. That is why we are calling on to all authorities. There is still a chance to correct this mistake. This project of destruction must be stopped immediately, the gates of the dam must be opened in a controlled manner and the reservoir must be removed. Tigris River must flow freely, the Ancient Hasankeyf city must continue living.
12,000-year history being destroyed

After the statement for the press was read out, main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) İstanbul MP Sezgin Tanrıkulu also made a brief statement and expressed his concerns about the ancient city of Hasankeyf and its surrounding Tigris Valley.

"Hasankeyf will be engulfed as of February 20, but we are unfortunately just a handful of people here", said the MP and added: "Hasankeyf is a history of 12,000 years and this history is being destroyed for the sake of an energy that has only a 50-year economic prize. For some reason, Turkey has not raised its voice for the region so far."

It is not too late for Hasankeyf

Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) MP Züleyha Gülüm took the floor after Tanrıkulu and stated the following in brief:

    "We are going through a process when the nature, humanity, history and culture are being destroyed and it is not limited to Hasankeyf. With Canal İstanbul project, with the projects in the Black Sea, with the projects in the Mount Ida, namely all across the country, we are faced with destruction.

    "Yes, this project is a very old one, it was drafted by previous governments, but its realization and implementation despite so many open objections have gained pace during the current government's rule.

    "Unfortunately, we cannot raise a strong voice. We need to stop and look to ourselves. We are having problems in laying claim to it collectively. Those who raise their voices for the Black Sea do not do the same for Hasankeyf, the ones who raise their voices for Hasankeyf do not do the same for the Mount Ida. Today, some part of it has been engulfed but it is not too late." (EK/ASK/EMK)
http://bianet.org/english/environment/2 ... ris-valley
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Re: Save HASANKEYF occupy CAVES protect countries downriver

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Re: Save HASANKEYF occupy CAVES protect countries downriver

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Feb 26, 2020 1:34 am

Locals bid painful farewell to Hasankeyf

Former residents of the ancient town of Hasankeyf in southeast Turkey have visited the area to bid a painful final farewell as it is submerged underwater

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The Turkish government approved the building of Ilisu Dam in the town in 1997, aiming at generating electricity for the region, creating jobs and boosting the local economy. However, the decision will uproot some 80,000 people from nearly 200 villages in the affected area as it sinks by 15cm per day.

The history of the predominantly Kurdish city, located in Mardin province, dates back nearly 12,000 years. However, it will be completely submerged to provide water for other nearby provinces like Batman, Mardin, Diyarbakır, Siirt and Sirnak.

The dam forms part of the huge Southeastern Anatolian Project (GAP), the largest and costliest project in Turkey’s history which aims to boost revenue in the poverty-stricken area, but has driven locals away from their livelihoods.

The Turkish government has built a new town on a nearby hill to accommodate for displaced residents and memories of the city’s past. A number of historical structures, including a tomb and mosque, have now been moved to Yeni Hasankeyf (New Hasankeyf). The government has also built houses for residents of the historic city.

Mehdi Cigci was a resident of the ancient town, and now lives in Yeni Hasankeyf.

His family is among the 120 families whose villages are submerged.

The Turkish government allows them to live rent-free in newly-built houses in Yeni Hasankeyf for five years, before then paying rent to the government. Once approximately $23,000 has been paid the houses will then be theirs, according to Cigci.

However, only 700 houses have been built so far, he complained. Many are waiting to be allocated a house- leaving Cigci to pay $70 a month to another landlord.

“Everyone is a victim”

Cetin Yildirim made ends meet as a tourist guide in the ancient town, now impossible as tourist numbers plummet. He told Rudaw English that most people visit the city to take their last photographs as it disappears underwater.

Regarding the government’s promise to turn the city into a tourism spot, Yildirim said he is “disappointed” with the government's slow steps in this regard.

He currently works odd jobs to afford the house rent and feed his family, awaiting the completion of the project to see if the government will give him any jobs.

Asked if he sees himself as a “victim,” Yildirim said that “everyone is a victim.”

    If you do not have a history
      you do not have anything
https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeas ... y/25022020
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Re: Save HASANKEYF occupy CAVES protect countries downriver

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Feb 26, 2020 10:40 pm

Locals watch Hasankeyf submerge

Locals in Turkey’s southeastern province of Batman watch on daily as a 12,000-year-old town slowly disappears by rising water levels of a dam project

The Ilısu Dam has already brought the water levels in and around Hasankeyf up by some 15 meters and levels continue to rise at a rate of 15 centimetres per day, Reuters said.

Turkish authorities are pushing forward with a dam project to power the region despite years of international outcry and decades of resistance by local and national organisations

The Ilısu Dam project, when completed, is expected to raise the level of the Tigris River by 60 metres, will submerge 80 percent of Hasankeyf, home of 2,500 people today, alongside several other villages which are home to thousands of residents.

Hundreds of historic artefacts and monuments have been transported from the ancient town, including centuries-old tombs, gates and mosques, to a nearby cultural park, despite a decision from Turkey’s Council of State to cancel the tender for the move.

The park is part of Yeni Hasankeyf (new Hasankeyf in Turkish), a new town created for residents of the ancient Hasankeyf.

The water has crept up on the shores of Hasankeyf near the end of an ancient bridge, which once spanned the Tigris, swallowing some houses, Reuters said.

Sections of roads in the town are now also under water.

“When I see Hasankeyf being left under water, I am torn up inside. We have memories there but our history is there as well. We are talking about 12,000 years,” Eyüp Agilday, a 27-year-old shepherd, who recently moved to a new town told Reuters.

The Ilısu Dam is part of Turkey’s Southeastern Anatolia Project, which is created to stimulate economic growth in the country’s poorest and least developed region. The dam will become Turkey’s fourth-largest dam in terms of energy production, generating 1,200 megawatts of electricity.

Ramazan Şevik, a resident of a nearby village, came with his two children to visit the town before it effectively disappears.

“We saw the history here but our children didn’t see those dusty beautiful caves. They’ll only a see a version of it with make-up,” he said.

https://ahvalnews.com/hasankeyf/locals- ... -submerges
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Re: Save HASANKEYF occupy CAVES protect countries downriver

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Feb 26, 2020 10:46 pm

History disappears as
waters flood Hasankeyf


HASANKEYF, Turkey (Reuters) - Every day hundreds of people gather on the banks of the Tigris river in southeast Turkey to watch a 12,000-year-old town disappearing before their eyes

Houses submerged by the rising waters of the Tigris River are seen in Hasankeyf in southeastern Batman province, Turkey, February 20, 2020.

Rising water levels from the giant Ilisu Dam further downstream are slowly submerging the town of Hasankeyf and flooding an area which was settled by humans for millennia.

The dam, approved by the Turkish government in 1997 to generate electricity for the region, will uproot nearly 80,000 people from 199 villages and has alarmed authorities in neighboring Iraq, who fear the impact on their water supplies from the Tigris.

After years of setbacks, the dam started filling last July. Water levels in and around Hasankeyf have already risen some 15 meters and continue to rise by around 15 centimeters per day.

The dam forms a key part of Turkey’s Southeastern Anatolia Project, designed to spur economic growth in its poorest and least developed area.

Residents have left Hasankeyf, many of them moving to a new town, Yeni Hasankeyf, on a nearby hill which will sit on the shores of a newly created lake once the dam is completely filled.

For now, they can see the stone pillars of an ancient bridge which once spanned the Tigris, and the concrete arches of its modern equivalent, both being slowly subsumed.

Dirt has been piled at both ends of the modern bridge, which leads into Hasankeyf, to prevent entry to the town. Village guards wait at the end of it.

The water has crept up on the shores of the town near the end of the bridge, swallowing some houses. Sections of roads in the town are also under water.

Reuters was turned away from another entrance to Hasankeyf by police who said only residents moving their last belongings and people with permission from local authorities could enter

Once the dam is filled, proposed plans for the area include ferries shuttling tourists between the new town to a section of the old town that will remain above the water. Several historical structures including a massive tomb, an ancient Turkish bath, a historic mosque and its minaret, have already been moved to Yeni Hasankeyf.

The Ilisu Dam will generate 1,200 megawatts of electricity, making it Turkey’s fourth-largest dam in terms of energy production.

Below the historic Hasankeyf fortress, where Romans, Mongols and Seljuk Turks fought or settled, a canyon that housed hundreds of caves in which people lived and worked has been filled with concrete some 50 meters of depth.

A waterway was constructed on top of the concrete to drain the rain water into the dam. Further above the waterway, shepherds still take their herds to graze on top of steep cliffs.

‘DUSTY BEAUTIFUL CAVES’

The dam is now 20-25% full, according to the Hasankeyf Coordination group, and the water will likely rise around another 50 meters in coming months, reaching just below the top of the fortress and submerging thousands more caves.

Eyup Agilday, a 27-year-old shepherd, recently moved to the new town. He still visits the old village everyday to take care of his sheep, which he left behind because there is no land for farming and husbandry in the new town.

“When I see Hasankeyf being left under water, I am torn up inside. We have memories there but our history is there as well. We are talking about 12,000 years,” he said, adding that around five families were still coming to the town to take care of their animals, which they still keep in caves.

Ramazan Sevik, originally from the nearby village of Gercus, came with his two children to visit the town before it is submerged.

“We saw the history here but our children didn’t see those dusty beautiful caves. They’ll only a see a version of it with make-up,” the 45-year-old said, sitting at a cafe on the banks of the Tigris that will be submerged in the coming weeks.

“Those who opposed (the project) were accused of being political. Even if you’re an environmentalist, a patriot, or animal lover, they labeled you as something else when you said ‘Stop!’ to the project,” he said.

“Now, we’re watching history slowly disappear.”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-turk ... SKBN20J1TW
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Re: KURDS ALLOW HASANKEYF TO BE DESTROYED

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Feb 28, 2020 4:14 am

Ancient Kurdish town
soon to be submerged


An ancient Kurdish town in southeastern Turkey is slowly drowning as a nearby government-built dam fills up

The history of Hasankeyf, Batman province, dates back 12,000 years

“When I see my town slowly sinking under water, my heart aches,” said Hasankeyf resident Hacer Erdem.

Local residents, activists, politicians, and artists who opposed the dam’s construction tried to save the town, but the Turkish government pressed forward with its plans.

Hasankeyf has been emptied of its residents, some of whom have been relocated to a new version of the town, where 900 new homes and 23 shops have been built.

The Turkish government approved the building of Ilisu Dam in the town in 1997, as part of the huge Southeastern Anatolian Project (GAP). The project’s stated aim is to generate electricity for the region, create jobs, and boost the economy in the poverty-stricken area.

Water will continue to fill the Ilisu dam for three months.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeas ... y/27022020
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Re: KURDS ALLOW HASANKEYF TO BE DESTROYED

PostAuthor: Anthea » Mon Mar 02, 2020 3:45 am

Our history sinks
before our eyes


Mesopotamia is a highly important region in the history of mankind. In Hasankeyf up to 12 thousand years old settlement remains have been found. This largely unexplored history is now sinking into the floods of the Ilisu Dam

Mesopotamia is one of the regions where the sedentarisation of mankind began. Urban culture, states, writing, administration and finally rule are developments that are based on developments in Mesopotamia, especially in the European context. The significance of the region for the Asian region is also being intensively researched. Mesopotamian history allows a look into the development of the self and the status quo of humanity and shows different possible ways of life, from matricentric societies to empires. One focus of this Mesopotamian history is the village of Hasankeyf, located by the Tigris Valley. More and more new finds prove an eventful history going back at least 12,000 years, i.e. to the Neolithic. Ancient churches can be found next to mosques and sanctuaries of the ancient religions and Mesopotamian original religions. This place and this landscape breathe history.

However, the fate of this place seems to be sealed. For the place is sinking, despite worldwide protests of civil society in the economically nonsensical and only for war purpose oriented Ilisu dam. With its dam system, Turkey is putting pressure on its neighboring countries, especially Iraq and Northern Syria, on the one hand, and on the other hand, the ways of the Kurdish freedom movement are intended to be cut off. Quite incidentally, more than 80,000 people have also been displaced from their land. In the meantime, only the roofs of the houses and the trees in the gardens of the displaced persons from this fertile region are still sticking out of the ground.

Soon there will be nothing left of the ancient town and the breath of history will be choked in the floods. In the distance we see a blanket or a pillow floating in the water. It has got stuck on a tree. On the bank of the rising reservoir stands an old woman leaning on her stick. Some people stop and watch the catastrophe, others take photos. The silence is sometimes broken by construction machinery and sometimes by the cackling of the ducks.

12,000 years of history is sacrificed to a dam project designed to last 50 years. The Tigris flows through the middle of the drama. It has been flowing in this bed for thousands of years and can bear witness to history, but it and its biodiversity are also sacrificed to the Ilisu dam. The rising water has so far flooded more than 250 settlements in Siirt, Mardin, Batman and Şırnak. In the past days the water reached Hasankeyf. Many of the historical places are already flooded. Also the houses of the people and their cemeteries are under water. One of the inhabitants of Hasankeyf is Hediye Tunç, who says: "The state has taken away our house and farm. I have lived in Hasankeyf for 60 years. Last week, our two two-storey houses have sunk. We are sitting on the street. Nobody cares about us."

The mother of eleven children complains: "God may not accept this cruelty. He should not leave us," and continues: "We do not want to leave our country. Where else should I go? Before this catastrophe we were happy. The water of the Tigris flowed with passion." She notes that she has not received any compensation from the state.

42-year-old Sunmez Er from the village of Organ, which sank a month ago, says: "A great many villages have sunk. We do not know where. The state has flooded our most fertile land. The graves of our grandmothers and grandfathers have been flooded. We had to leave them there. We expect nothing from the state anyway, but we want our rights. The state hasn't kept a single promise so far.”

The flooding is a disaster not only for the people but also for nature. A 650 square kilometer area of nature is being destroyed. According to the Hasankeyf Coordination, an association of initiatives to save the historical cultural site in Northern Kurdistan, at least 15,000 people have been displaced. However, the number of people affected is likely to be much higher and is cautiously estimated to be about 100,000 inhabitants inside the Tigris shore zone. This project, however, does not bring any benefit at all, but only profits for large corporations. It poses a threat to Iraq and Syria as well because Turkey uses water as a weapon. The sinking of the Tigris level due to the GAP dam system has already had a negative impact on Iraqi agriculture.
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Re: KURDS ALLOW HASANKEYF TO BE DESTROYED

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Mar 03, 2020 1:10 am

CALL BY ARTISTS
WRITERS, INTELLECTUALS:


Hasankeyf is About to Breathe its Last
    Let’s Keep it Alive
Hasankeyf Coordination has visited the villages of Hasankeyf, which is soon to be engulfed by the Ilısu dam as its reservoir keeps growing.

Making a statement for the press, the Coordination has announced that while 40 villages have been entirely flooded, a large part of houses and agricultural fields in 60 villages have been submerged by the rising water.

As reported by Yunus Emre Ceren from daily BirGün, Master Architect Mücella Yapısı has read out the statement on behalf of the coordination.

Mücella Yapıcı has said, "As a result of wrong policies, the city of Hasankeyf with at least 12 thousand years of history as well as 289 mounds and 199 villages and hamlets are engulfed, 80 of them entirely. The deluge and plunder continue along the Tigris Valley. A living being, a house, a history is submerged every second."

"In the Ancient City of Hasankeyf, historic areas were dynamited, heavy machinery was used in archeological excavation sites and cultural heritage was concreted. The arguments put forward by the government about the construction of this dam are coming to nothing with each passing day.

"Forced migration and the ensuing impoverishment are becoming visible wherever the dam reservoir has reached in both Hasankeyf and city center of Batman. We shouldn't be deceived by the display of large landowners.

"The ratio of rich and poor across the country manifests itself here as well. At least 10 thousand people without any land have been and are still deprived of their right to housing, the most basic human right, without receiving any compensation. Unable to leave their villages, fearing that their houses will be submerged when they wake up in the morning, thousands of people are trying to sustain their lives under difficult conditions.

"In several villages, houses have been partly submerged and life goes on at their upper parts. The promises made for housing have not been kept.

"With the closing of the dam gates, millions of species have drowned in the waters of Tigris, which is a source of life. The dam reservoir has turned into a deluge along the valley. Even though it was said that new nesting sites would be formed for endangered species as a result of public outcry, there is no work in sight along the area, apart from a few towers for birds."

Turkish Medical Association (TTB) member Dr. Nazmi Algan has read out the artists' joint call for Hasankeyf. Here is the statement signed by 94 artists including Ahmet Ümit, Altan Erkekli, Jehan Barbur, Levent Üzümcü, Metin Uca, Cengiz Bozkurt, Deniz Çakır, Onur Akın, Ercan Kesal, Fırat Tanış, Genco Erkal, Suavi and Zülfü Livaneli:

"Open the Dam Gates in a Controlled Manner, Put This Historic Mistake Right in Hasankeyf!

"One of the most valuable cultural heritage sites of the world where life has been uninterruptedly going on for 12 thousand years, the Ancient City of Hasankeyf is about to breathe its last! We want to warn you, the responsible parties, for the last time about Hasankeyf, which will be completely submerged if no intervention is made now.

"Let's not destroy such a value of ours for a dam project which cannot be explained with any rational need or reason and is deprived of any function. We, as the artists, intellectuals and writers of this country, are calling out to you, the responsible ones! We want the dam gates to be opened in a controlled manner in the region where the filling of water has started and we want the filled water to be emptied so that Hasankeyf can be kept alive. Let us put this historic mistake right together! Let us keep Hasankeyf alive!"

The statement has been signed by the following people:

A.Mücella Yapıcı, Ahmet Ümit, Ali Bilge, Ali Uçansu, Altan Erkekli, Aydın Engin, Ayfer Düzdaş, Ayşe Cemal, Ayşe Erzan, Ayşegül Devecioğlu, Barış Atay, Barış Bağcı, Betül Arım, Beyza Üstün, Birce Akalay, Binnaz Toprak, Can Atalay, Celal Yıldırım, Celil Nalçakan, Cemil Qoçgiri, Cengiz Bozkurt, Cezmi Baskın, Damla Kılıçoğlu, Deniz Çakır, Deniz Türkali, Diljen Roni, Doğan Bermek, Emine Uşaklıgil, Ercan Kesal, Erdoğan Aydın, Erdoğan Kahyaoğlu, Erhan Güleryüz, Erol Babaoğlu, Esra Koç, Fırat Tanış, Genco Erkal, Gençay Gürsoy, Gülseren Onanç, Güney Zeki Göker, Gürhan Ertür, Hacer Ansal, Haluk Levent, Hüsnü Arkan, Iraz Yöntem, İrfan Değirmenci, Jehan Barbur, Kıraç, Levent İnanır, Levent Üzümcü, Mebuse Tekay, Melek Ulagay Taylan, Mem Ararat, Metin Uca, Mikail Aslan, Mustafa Paçal, Mustafa Peköz, Nakiye Boran, Nazar Büyüm, Nazım Dikbaş, Neslihan Yargıcı, Nesrin Nas, Nesteren Davutoğlu, Neşe Erdilek, Nevin Soyukaya, Nilüfer Açıkalın, Nurcan Baysal, Nurhan Özenen, Nurten Ertuğrul, Onur Akın, Orhan Alkaya, Orhan Aydın, Orhan Silier, Oya Baydar, Özgür Mumcu, Rıza Akın, Saygın Ersin, Selim Temo, Sinan Tuzcu, Soner Olgun, Suavi, Şebnem Sönmez, Şevval Sam, Tarık Günersel, Tatyos Bebek, Ülkü Duru, Viki Çiprut, Yasemin Bektaş, Yavuz Ekinci, Yekta Kopan, Zeynep Tanbay, Zülfü Livaneli

http://bianet.org/english/environment/2 ... p-it-alive
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Re: ACT NOW KURDS - LET US KEEP HASANKEYF ALIVE

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:00 pm

Dam Waters Flood Hasankeyf
    Taking History With It

Young Kurdish boys picnic on a building of the ancient city of Hasankeyf which will soon be under water as part of a controversial dam project

Despite years of protests by residents and activists, the small village on the banks of the Tigris River will soon be underwater as part of a controversial dam project. Authorities have started to move some historic monuments, and have already destroyed others.

Old city has been abandoned, government cut electricity and water, the historic market, has been destroyed and disappear during last days. Residents are being moved from the ancient town to a 'New Hasankeyf' nearby, while historic artefacts have also been transported out of the area.

Image
(Photo by BULENT KILIC/AFP via Getty Images)

    A 12,000 year old town in Turkey is disappearing into the Tigris River, as rising water levels from the Ilisu Dam slowly submerge the town of Hasankeyf

    The move is alarming Iraqi officials, who fear that this will impact the water scarce’s already strained water supply from the Tigris River.

    The Ilisu Dam will generate 1,200 megawatts of electricity, making it Turkey’s fourth-largest dam in terms of energy production.

    The Dam has an expected life of 60 years

A 12,000 year old town in Turkey is disappearing into the Tigris River, as rising water levels from the giant Ilisu Dam further downstream are slowly submerging the town of Hasankeyf and flooding an area which was settled by humans for millennia. Coupled with climate change, and identity politics, the decision of the dam’s placement comes with ramification.

According to a Reuters report, the dam was approved by the Turkish government in 1997 to generate electricity. Now, it threatens to uproot nearly 80,000 people from 199 nearby villages.

“Dirt has been piled at both ends of the modern bridge, which leads into Hasankeyf, to prevent entry to the town. Village guards wait at the end of it,” the Reuters report describes.

A Kurdish village guard waits to block the entrance to the ancient city of Hasankeyf which will be soon under water as part of a controversial dam project, on February 24, 2020. Despite years of protests by residents and activists, the small village on the banks of the Tigris River will soon be underwater as part of a controversial dam project. Authorities have started to move some historic monuments, and have already destroyed others. Old city has been abandoned, government cut electricity and water, the historic market, has been destroyed and disappear during last days. Residents are being moved from the ancient town to a 'New Hasankeyf' nearby, while historic artefacts have also been transported out of the area.

Image
(Photo by BULENT KILIC/AFP via Getty Images)

Hasankeyf was designated a conservation area by Turkey in 1981. With a history that spans nine civilizations built in the heart of the Fertile Crescent, the ancient town holds archaeological and religious significance. The city holds a bridge held to be the largest from the Medieval period, and a variety of surviving, sacred mosques from the 14th century.

After years of setbacks, the dam was online and started filling in July 2019. The water levels around the town have already risen 49.2 feet, and will continue rising at a rate of 5.9 inches a day or 3.4 feet a month.

According to Reuters, “the Ilisu Dam forms a strategic portion of Turkey’s Southeastern Anatolia Project, designed to spur economic growth in its poorest and least developed area.”

Many locals have left Hasankeyf, many of them relocating to Yeni Hasankeyf, a new town on a nearby hill which will sit on the shores of a newly created lake once the dam is completely filled, Reuters reported.

The dam is now 20-25% full, according to the Hasankeyf Coordination group, Reuters reported, and the water will likely rise around another 164 feet in coming months.

People visit abandoned houses of the ancient city of Hasankeyf which will soon be underwater as part of a controversial dam project, on February 24, 2020. Despite years of protests by residents and activists, the small village on the banks of the Tigris River will soon be underwater as part of a controversial dam project. Authorities have started to move some historic monuments, and have already destroyed others. Old city has been abandoned, government cut electricity and water, the historic market, has been destroyed and disappear during last days. Residents are being moved from the ancient town to a 'New Hasankeyf' nearby, while historic artefacts have also been transported out of the area.

Image
(Photo by BULENT KILIC/AFP via Getty Images)

The move is alarming Iraqi officials, who fear that this will impact the water scarce’s already strained water supply from the Tigris River.

As weather.com reported, water availability, access and sanitation in Iraq are all below international standards. Furthermore, water resources are increasingly under stress due to both climate change and bureaucratic mismanagement, according to analysts.

Roughly 70% of Iraq’s water resources flow from outside its territory, especially from the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers. Both flow through Turkey. Due to climate factors as have been exacerbated by climate change, Iraq had experienced an extended severe drought, though parts of the country are receiving rain this year.

This reality has been used for political gain in the past. In 2018, Iran cut the water from the Little Zab River which flows all the way to Baghdad, and from 42 smaller rivers that flow into Iraq, according Iraqi Foreign Ministry spokesperson Ahmed Mahjoob. Iran also temporarily cut the water flowing from the Little Zab in 2017, which led officials in Iraqi Kurdistan to restrict the flow of water into Iraq.

The question of dams and water flow is not a new issue in the region, and Iraq is stuck in the middle. Iran and Turkey constructed dams on the Tigris and Euphrates, preventing water from entering Iraq and reducing the water entering Iraq by more than 40 percent, according to a recent report.

Following the Tigris, Hasankeyf is roughly 75 miles from Iraq.

This isn’t the first time Iraq is being plagued by a potential water crisis. In 1975, Saddam Hussein and Iran’s Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlav signed the Algiers Water Agreement in which Iraq relinquished claims to the Shatt-al-Arab waterway, in exchange for Iran to cease its support of an independent Kurdistan.

Kurds are notoriously the largest diasporic group without a country. While there is no census of the Kurdish diaspora, the Council of Foreign Relations estimates there are 2 million Kurds outside of Kurdistan, the majority of whom are in Europe. This figure includes Kurds from the ancestral Kurdistan region, which spans portions of modern day Iraq, Iran, Turkey and Syria. The Kurds have been persecuted for their identity by all four of these countries, and in some cases are still being persecuted and mistreated, like in Turkey.

The current population of Hasankeyf is predominantly Kurdish.

Before the dam was turned on, environmental campaigners unsuccessfully challenged the dam project at the European Court of Human Rights on the grounds it would damage the country’s cultural heritage.

According to Reuters, the Ilisu Dam will generate 1,200 megawatts of electricity, making it Turkey’s fourth-largest dam in terms of energy production.

This picture taken on February 24, 2020, shows destroyed houses from the ancient city of Hasankeyf which will soon be underwater as part of a controversial dam project. Despite years of protests by residents and activists, the small village on the banks of the Tigris River will soon be underwater as part of a controversial dam project. Authorities have started to move some historic monuments, and have already destroyed others. Old city has been abandoned, government cut electricity and water, the historic market, has been destroyed and disappear during last days. Residents are being moved from the ancient town to a 'New Hasankeyf' nearby, while historic artefacts have also been transported out of the area.

https://weather.com/science/environment ... rkish-town

Let us NOT forget all the totally unique flora and fauna which is being destroyed
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Re: ACT NOW KURDS - LET US KEEP HASANKEYF ALIVE

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Mar 06, 2020 11:26 pm

Women bid goodbye to
their submerged homes


Habibe Sacik sat at the banks of the Tigris River and wept

“I came to see my village one last time,” she said a few days before the waters of the controversial Ilisu Dam inundated her village along with dozens of others. “Wherever you go, how far you travel, home is home. You feel its loss.”

Sacik is one of two women who tell the story of the region through the eyes of women, in a new documentary called “Siya Ave,” which means “Shadow of the Water” in Kurdish. Traveling along the banks of the Tigris River, the two women tell of their lives impacted by the Turkish government’s pet project in southeastern Anatolia, the Ilisu Dam.

Ilisu is Turkey’s largest hydroelectric dam and the crown jewel of the Southeastern Anatolia Project. But it also submerges Hasankeyf, a 12,000-year-old town in the southeastern province of Batman and home to many of the civilizations of Mesopotamia. Some 80,000 people have already left their ancestors’ lands and reluctantly moved to the new settlements offered, some 10 kilometers (6 miles) away.

Sacik’s village, Celtikbasi, is not in internationally known Hasankeyf but further into the east, in the Kurtalan district of Siirt. Located in the Tigris Valley, Celtikbasi, along with half a dozen nearby villages, was vacated last year, too.

Sacik, who has moved to Batman, visited her village one last time, along with her best friend from childhood, Firyaz Yoksu, who had moved to Istanbul decades ago. Yoksu is also the mother of the director of the documentary, journalist Metin Yoksu.

The 25-minute documentary shows how the women travel to their village and to other parts of the region one last time, sharing memories and telling their family history. “We will not forget our village — not ever,” Yoksu said on camera. “But our grandchildren will not see it.”

Sacik added, “It was our great-grandfather who settled here, my parents were born here. I was cooking when I heard that the rising waters had reached the village next to us. So I came immediately, I knew I had little time to see it one last time.”

While Sacik took a bus from the next town, Yoksu got her son to drive her from Istanbul, which took a whole day. “I had to see it one last time,” she said. “I know I will carry the longing for my natal town to my grave.”

The history of the controversial dam in the southeast goes back to the 1950s and more than 60 years of campaigning against its construction, despite the advantages it would bring to the water-scarce region. After much zigzagging from consecutive governments, the construction kicked off with a ceremony in 2006 attended by then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Eleven years later, in May 2017, the authorities relocated the mausoleum of the 15th-century warrior Zeynel Bey in a stage-managed spectacle designed to silence critics by supposedly showing that the government respects historical heritage.

For the residents, the move of the tomb was the final nail in the coffin. “I knew that once the tomb was moved, nothing, no one could remain in Hasankeyf,” said Sacide Yagan, who watched the move from the terrace of her old home, now underwater. “I knew that we would have to move very, very soon — both the living and the dead,” she told Al-Monitor.

More artifacts were moved, though some remained and residents were gradually moved to their own homes. The slowly rising waters started to swallow the valleys, then the nearby villages and finally the historical district.

Many of the women say they were the ones who minded most leaving behind their homes, where they have spent most of their lives. “I lived in the same house for 50 years, brought up all my children there,” Emine Demirkan, a 70-year-old resident of Hasankeyf, told Al-Monitor. “We built this house ourselves, making improvements whenever we had a bit of money. Then we stopped because we realized that we had to leave the house. We will get 230,000 Turkish liras [$37,800] for this house. We did not want it at first but we would have to take it, what else can we do?The new house is far too small, we spent a good deal to make it habitable.”

Another woman stood crying, “I have so much to say, but no words, only pain. I do not want to leave my house, but what can I do?” she sobbed, but shook her head when asked her name, reluctant to give it.

Not all the residents of Hasankeyf have been offered a new house in the new town, some 10 kilometers away. Those who did not apply in time were rejected on the grounds that there were no houses left for them.

Nilufer Iridil, 34, whose husband is unemployed, told Al-Monitor that she did not know what to do because they had been late in applying and got no house in the new town. “This is my house and it is all I have. We have no jobs, no employers. We have three children. Where will we go? We will go live in caves if we have no choice.”

Her mother, Remziye Celik, lived in the cave dwellings that surrounded the town and gave birth to her first child in the cave before moving to a house in old Hasankeyf, Iridil said. The Celik family now has a house in new Hasankeyf. “But my mother is not happy,” Iridil added. “She misses the old town, the old neighborhood and she misses me.”

Kadriye Atmaca, a 67-year-old mother of eight children, was packing up when Al-Monitor talked to her. “We love our homes very much and it is with tears we leave. We only do that because we have to. We grew up here, we love it here. We do not go voluntarily. I will not forget Hasankey — my paradise — until I die. I will tell my grandchildren about it and show the photos,” she said.

https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/origin ... nkeyf.html
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Re: HASANKEYF should be a symbol of unity for ALL Kurds

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Mar 06, 2020 11:47 pm

It is not so much what Kurds are losing, more

    what they are allowing others to take from them
Hasankeyf is the most ancient important area of Kurdistan

Hasankeyf belongs to ALL of KURDISTAN

Hasankeyf should be the symbol of a

UNITED KURDISTAN
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Re: HASANKEYF should be a symbol of unity for ALL Kurds

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Mar 14, 2020 8:39 pm

Submerging Historic
Town of Hasankeyf


https://youtu.be/q5Hq0KP9TP4
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Re: HASANKEYF should be a symbol of unity for ALL Kurds

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Mar 19, 2020 1:58 am

Slowly Flooding History

One of the oldest continuously inhabited settlements in the world, Hasankeyf, has been home to more than 20 cultures over the past 12,000 years

Early settlers carved caves into the surrounding limestone cliffs. Romans built a fortress to monitor crop and livestock transportation. Travelers on the Silk Road often stopped in the area to trade during the Middle Ages.

Remnants of past cultures have been preserved for thousands of years in Hasankeyf, which was absorbed by the Ottoman Empire in the 1500s and has remained part of Turkey ever since. But those artifacts—thousands of human-made caves and hundreds of well-preserved medieval monuments—may soon be underwater. A new dam and reservoir threatens to drown the city.

Located about 56 kilometers (35 miles) downstream of Hasankeyf, the approximately 135-meter (440-foot) tall Ilisu Dam is expected to provide 1,200 megawatts of electricity (around 1.5 percent of Turkey’s total power-generating capacity). The dam is part of Turkey’s Southeastern Anatolia Project, which consists of 19 hydroelectric plants and 22 dams on the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. The effort is designed to help promote economic growth and energy independence for the country. But there will also be a cost.

Holding back water from the Tigris River, Ilisu Dam will create a reservoir covering 190 square kilometers (74 square miles) of land. When near capacity, the reservoir will almost completely submerge Hasankeyf and displace more than 70,000 people. Additionally, the dam will decrease water supplies to Syria and Iraq.

The natural-color images above show Hasankeyf on February 22, 2019 (left) and March 12, 2020 (right). The images below show the area near Ilisu Dam (located further downstream) on the same dates. The reservoir began filling in July 2019.

As of February 2020, water levels behind the dam were rising at a rate of about 15 centimeters (6 inches) per day. The reservoir is only about one quarter full and is expected to rise another 50 meters (160 feet) in upcoming months—enough to submerge thousands of nearby caves and nearly all of the Hasankeyf fortress previously occupied by the Romans, Mongols, and Seljuk Turks.

Some historical structures (including a tomb, mosque, and ancient bath) and all residents have been relocated to a new town on a nearby hill called New Hasankeyf (or Yeni Hasankeyf). Once the reservoir is full, a ferry system will shuttle people between the new town and what remains above water in Hasankeyf.

NASA Earth Observatory images by Lauren Dauphin, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey. Story by Kasha Patel.

Link to article and photos:

https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/image ... ng-history
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Re: HASANKEYF should be a symbol of unity for ALL Kurds

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Mar 25, 2020 2:45 am

Hasankeyf Coordination

Appointment of Trustee Directly Related with Ilısu Dam

Hasankeyf Coordination has released a written statement regarding the appointment of a trustee to the Peoples' Democratic Party's (HDP) Batman Provincial Municipality. The Coordination has underlined that this appointment is directly related with the Ilısu Dam and Hydroelectric Power Plant project, which will soon engulf the ancient city of Hasankeyf.

The Coordination has briefly stated the following:

"HDP's Batman Co-Chairs were raising concerns over not only the aggravation of socio-economic problems following the unprepared arrival of tens of thousands of people forced to emigrate due to Ilısu Dam in Batman province and over the destruction of a 12,000-year universal heritage, but they we were also attracting attention to a different dimension of the destruction to be caused by Ilısu Dam.

"The waste water flowing to dam reservoir is now undergoing only a preliminary treatment and the lack of any biological treatment is posing a serious risk to public health. If we add the waste water coming from industrial-chemical and irrigation-based agriculture and the waste water not subjected to any treatment, the risk is increasing further.

'Revoke appointment of trustees'

"It is apparent that the unlawful appointment of trustee is directly related with Ilısu Dam and Hydroelectric Power Plant project. The destruction ensuing previous appointment of trustees is an indication of that.

"The trustee was appointed in less than 12 hours after the Batman Municipality decided to postpone payment of water bills, which shows that the mindset of a civic/revolutionary municipality and the trustee policy have come up against each other on the issue of water right, too. The appointment of a trustee is also an attack on people's right to access free water in these outbreak conditions. The government keeps pursuing its policies against water rights even under these circumstances.

"We, as Hasankeyf Coordination, request that the appointment of trustees be revoked immediately, the water retention in Ilısu Dam and Hydroelectric Power Plant be stopped urgently and the free flow of water be allowed by opening the dam gates in a controlled manner."

A summary of Ilısu Dam Project by life defenders

In a statement in June 2019, life defenders shared following summary information about the ancient city of Hasankeyf threatened by Ilısu Dam:

"Ilısu Project is a project that will bring wrongs and destruction from the beginning to end. The official claim that 'the project will bring socio-economic benefits to the local community' is an utter deception.

"This project will not only engulf important cultural heritage in Upper Mesopotamia, especially Hasankeyf, but it will also lead around 80 thousand people into poverty and destruction of Tigris Basin, which is still biodiversifically rich.

"A dramatic fall in the amount of water to the UNESCO site of Mesopotamian Marshes is the most significant risk to be caused by this dam project.

"As it was experienced and seen before with other dam projects undertaken in the region, the Ilısu Dam Project will bring about social, economic, cultural and ecological destruction.

"Hasankeyf, which is a cultural and natural heritage site integrated with Tigris River, has been subjected to irreversible and multidimensional destruction as a result of securitizing and baseless economic interests.

"The filling of Ilısu Dam reservoir is wanted to be used as a justification for displacement and migration. When the filling of the dam starts, the natural ecosystem of Tigris River will be harmed along hundreds of kilometers."

http://bianet.org/english/life/221897-h ... -ilisu-dam
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Re: HASANKEYF should be a symbol of unity for ALL Kurds

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Mar 25, 2020 3:12 pm

Open letter for Hasankeyf

"The Turkish government must, at a minimum, halt the filling of the Ilısu Reservoir and continue archaeological excavations in order to document and preserve important aspects of Hasankeyf’s cultural heritage."

Environmental organisations wrote an open letter to the government of Turkey, the suppliers to the Ilısu Dam and Hydroelectric Power Plant Project, and the members of UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee calling for excavation, documentation and conservation of cultural heritage in Hasankeyf to continue.

The letter reads as follows:

The newly opened Hasankeyf Museum – constructed to preserve some of the artifacts salvaged from Hasankeyf and the region before flooding by Turkey’s controversial Ilısu Hydroelectric Dam – presents a sweeping narrative of the region’s history. The exhibit begins with the geological formation of the Upper Tigris basin, continues through the appearance of organized human settlements in the Neolithic period, and culminates in the city’s flourishing under the Artukids, Ayyubids, and Akkoyunlus in the 12th-15th centuries CE.

The museum collection is impressive not only in its historical scope, but also for the beauty of individual pieces, including rare examples of Neolithic pottery, early Islamic gravestones, and stucco reliefs in the style of the Great Seljuks. Despite its remarkable assets, however, the museum cannot disguise the fact that it is a by-product of the multi-billion-euro Ilısu Dam and Hydroelectric Power Plant project, which has brought the destruction of natural and cultural heritage of inestimable value, denying the affected peoples their right to access their cultural heritage (guaranteed by ICESCR Article 15) and to be consulted systematically in projects involving the alteration of historic buildings (as enshrined in the Granada Convention, Article 14, and Turkish Approval Law No 3534).

The museum, together with the reinforced Citadel Mount and the archaeological park (where seven monuments removed from the lower city now stand), constitutes the government’s program to preserve the ancient city’s cultural heritage. Despite its lofty ambitions, this conservation program is deeply flawed on several counts. Two of its most egregious failings are: 1) insufficient coverage of the early Islamic period and 2) the total exclusion of the long-enduring Christian element.

The museum’s coverage of the early Islamic period is limited to a small number of coins and two stones engraved with an early style of Arabic calligraphy. Executed with angular letters in one example, rounded in the other, these inscriptions are two of the most intriguing and important objects in the museum, particularly as stone inscriptions from the early Islamic period are few in number. The discovery of these stones suggests that further archaeological excavation in the lower city of Hasankeyf may well yield new information about the development of Islamic civilization in Upper Mesopotamia in the 7th-9thcenturies – a period of history only partially illuminated by textual sources.

Regarding the museum’s coverage of Hasankeyf’s Christian legacy, the display of Christian artifacts consists of five crosses from the Byzantine period, and a visitor would be forgiven for leaving the museum with the idea that the city’s Christian history ended with the Islamic conquest in 640 CE.

This gap in the historical narrative advanced in the Hasankeyf Museum is unconscionable, as there is ample evidence showing that Christians and Christianity played a significant role in the city’s cultural and economic life for more than 1300 years following the advent of Islam. In the 10th century, for example, Arab geographer al-Muqaddasi notes the city’s numerous churches, while Ottoman records from the late 16th century indicate that of 1700 households in Hasankeyf, nearly 60 percent were Christian.

There is also significant immovable cultural heritage remaining in Hasankeyf today that attests to the historical Christian presence, including cave churches on either side of the lower city. Stone masonry structures include the Tareke Church at the heart of the lower city (near the original site of the Rizk Mosque), Deiriki Church (also known as the Church of the Forty Martyrs) below the southeastern corner of the Citadel, and the Monastery of Mor Aho, which was endowed by residents of the villages of Atafiye and Difne/Üçyol in the 16th century.

It is a dereliction of Turkey’s duty as owner of the historic city of Hasankeyf to leave the immovable cultural heritage of the city’s erstwhile Christian community undocumented and unprotected. Today, Hasankeyf residents continue to value the Christian dimension of their cultural heritage, recounting their experiences working side-by-side with Christian neighbors as they began their careers as tailors, weavers, or traders. Many note that just a few generations back their families had been Christian. And residents often share their knowledge about Hasankeyf’s Christian districts, churches and monasteries.

The total erasure of the Christian legacy from the Hasankeyf landscape, whether due to neglect or otherwise, would constitute a severe and reprehensible violation of the universal human right to participate in the cultural life of the community, including access to cultural heritage. Urgent action is required to ensure that these monuments are not lost due to their express exclusion from the government’s cultural heritage conservation program for Hasankeyf.

The 2003 UNESCO Declaration concerning the Intentional Destruction of Cultural Heritage affirms that “cultural heritage is an important component of the cultural identity of communities, groups and individuals, and of social cohesion, so that its intentional destruction may have adverse consequences on human dignity or human rights.” There is no justification for the near-total exclusion of Christianity from the museum and the adjacent collection of monuments transferred from the ancient city.

To remedy this situation, the Turkish government must, at a minimum, halt the filling of the Ilısu Reservoir (by opening the flood gates to allow a controlled flow of water) and continue archaeological excavations in order to document and preserve important aspects of Hasankeyf’s cultural heritage, focusing in particular on the early Islamic period, the enduring Christian element, and the evolution of Muslim-Christian interactions from the 7th to 20th centuries. The continuation of archaeological excavation and conservation work would also create employment opportunities for local residents who face an extended period of economic hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic and, in particular, its negative impact on the tourism sector.

We also demand that all strategic partners in the Ilısu Dam project supply chain, especially the companies Andritz, Nurol, Cengizler, Er-Bu and Bresser, and the banks GarantiBBVA and Akbank, use their leverage to avert the total elimination of Hasankeyf’s Christian legacy.

Furthermore, UNESCO’s silence on the Hasankeyf controversy is unacceptable. Although Hasankeyf very likely meets 9 of 10 criteria for inclusion on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, the provision that only States Parties can nominate a site has kept it from being recognized for protection, despite years of pleas from civil society, municipalities and scientists.

The Ilısu Dam project has progressed in an atmosphere of intermittent armed conflict and ongoing repression of civil rights, where affected peoples and diverse stakeholders have been repeatedly and strongly discouraged from expressing their views. Therefore, the flooding of Hasankeyf and the Upper Tigris basin is a violation of the basic human right to participate in the cultural life of the community, which is affirmed by the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (Article 15), as well as a violation of the Granada Convention (CETS 121, Article 14), which requires systematic and sustained consultation with the public regarding the alternation of historic buildings.

We call upon the Members of UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee to urgently create mechanisms affording diverse stakeholders (including affected peoples, civil society organizations, scholars, and others) to make their concerns known and to play a substantive role in identifying candidate sites for World Heritage listing and monitoring/managing listed sites."

Signed:

Hasankeyf Matters

Initiative to Keep Hasankeyf Alive

The Corner House

FIVAS Association for International Water Studies

Humat Dijlah (Tigris River Protector Association)

Riverwatch

Save the Tigris Campaign
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Re: HASANKEYF should be a symbol of unity for ALL Kurds

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sun Mar 29, 2020 1:25 am

Please follow link below for video of Hasankeyf

https://www.facebook.com/suleyman.agald ... 272536851/
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