Amasya residents fight gas station construction on green area in Gezi-inspired protest
Dozens of demonstrators stood guard all night to prevent workers from continuing to cut down trees. AA PhotoA small and picturesque town on the banks of Yeşilırmak in the interior of the central Black Sea region has spent the night demonstrating to prevent a green area being destroyed to make way for a gas station in a Gezi-inspired spontaneous protest.
Residents of Amasya started gathering late on June 3 after workers started to cut trees on a plot of land with 137 trees in the center of the town belonging to the Turkish State Railways and used by locals as a major recreation and picnic area.
The demonstrators that flocked to the park prevented workers from continuing their work, halting the cutting down of trees. Police officers immediately dispatched to the area failed to convince the dismayed residents, who knocked down the steel sheet walls surrounding the construction area and began to occupy the land. Some locals pointed that the construction of a gas station would also cause problems for a primary school located just 25 meters from the park. Dozens of demonstrators stood guard all night to prevent workers from returning.
Umut Yolcu, a lawyer from the Amasya Bar Association, told reporters that they would apply to demand the cancelation of the license given to the gas company.
Residents received massive support across the country after news from their demonstrations spread on social media under the hashtag #DirenAmasya (Resist Amasya).
Amasya is a town particularly known for its nature and apple trees as well as historic Ottoman-era wooden houses along the Yeşilırmak River.