Entire district on Turkish-Syrian border with 78,000 inhabitants to be sold off
Ceylanpınar is the only district in Turkey where almost none of the estates have any formal deeds.In an unprecedented move, almost an entire district in southeastern Turkey bordering Syria is set to be sold to private investors, as part of a new “urban transformation and development” project.
Ceylanpınar, which has been severely affected by fighting between rival factions across the border in Syria, is the only district in Turkey where almost none of the estates have any formal deeds.
Officials say all land and buildings in the district are the property of Treasury, giving it the authority to draw up plans.
With 78,000 inhabitants and located in an impoverished rural area in the south of Şanlıurfa province, Ceylanpınar may become the latest and most atypical urban transformation project in Turkey.
“There are 35 villages and 15 neighborhoods in the district. None have any deeds. Just think about how many illegal buildings there are in the area,” said ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Şanlıurfa deputy Abdülkerim Gök, claiming that locals would support the move.
“Most of the locals want to pay what’s due and get their deeds. Now, we will determine the market value of lands and take action accordingly,” Gök added.
The whole district will be declared an urban transformation zone according to an article included in a new omnibus bill on labor security, which is set to be submitted to the Parliament agenda.
Schools and hospitals in the district will be kept as public properties, but the rest of the land will be transferred to the local municipality, which will decide on whether to distribute deeds to locals or sell to other bidders.
“Many administrative and legal disputes have arisen between the state and our citizens over homes and businesses not having any deeds. Because the problems of property were not solved, much injustice occurred,” the article states, in justification of the move.
It also states that the economic situation and possible difficulties in paying for locals will be taken into account in such cases.