Minister promises Black Sea city locals area ‘will not be damaged’ amid protests

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Turkey’s Transport and Infrastructure Minister Adil Karaismailoğlu has promised locals who have been protesting against the construction of a stone quarry in the Black Sea province of Rize’s İkizdere district that it will not be damaged after weeks-long protests.

During a visit to İkizdere, Karaismailoğlu assured the locals that the forested area will not be damaged.

“If 10 trees are damaged, we will plant 100 trees for them,” said the minister on late May 10.

Saying that the area is the best location to construct a quarry, the minister added, “We guarantee we will leave the area in two years at most.”

A native of Trabzon, a neighboring province of Rize, Karaismailoğlu said the government also aims to boost employment in the region.

Following a mining company’s attempt to construct a quarry, villagers have been holding protests since April 25 as they believe the constructors will wreak havoc on the environment and their native lands.

Nearly 16 million tons of stone are expected to be extracted to fill a nearby seashore where the Logistics Center and Port project will be built in Rize.

Hurriyet Daily News

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