Archeological excavations in Turkey to continue all year long
A protocol enabling the extension of 20 archeological excavations’ time-span to 12 months has been signed between Turkey’s Atatürk Supreme Council of Culture Language and History, Turkish Historical Society and General Directorate of Cultural Heritage and Museums.
“In the first stage, we have decided to support 12-month of excavations starting in 20 excavation sites with a condition that they present us an accurate program and employ as many archaeologists and art historians as we demand,” Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy has said.
“With this protocol, we will both endorse more experts and employees and increase the productivity of excavations. We will also contribute to the excavations’ budget by transferring the profit gained from visitors,” Ersoy said.
“After a while, the excavations will have enough funds to finance themselves and this will come to a state of sustainability,” he said.
Although the project initially covers 20 archeological sites, it will expand to cover at least 20 additional sites each year, said Ersoy.
“We aim to reach at least 122 excavations by 2023,” he said.
There are 153 excavations sites affiliated to the Culture Ministry, 31 of which are led by foreigners and 122 by Turks, Ersoy said.
“The biggest problem in these areas was that most of them were excavated every year for 45 or 60 days and then waiting until the next season,” he said.
“I am very happy that with the newly created employment [opportunities], I will able to hold my head high in front of my students whom I could not look in the eye,” said Dr. Havva İşkan, the site director of Patara ancient city in southern Antalya.