Construction in habitat of Mediterranean seals enrages activist in western Turkey
AYDIN – Doğan News Agency
DHA PhotoA construction project in a natural botanical park in the Aegean town of Kuşadası, which also includes the only remaining nesting site of endangered Mediterranean seals, has drawn reaction from environmentalists.
Activists demanded the halt of the construction of a new hotel in the area, which had been protected after the Kuşadası municipality council approved the area as a botanical park in 2011 following an application by the Protection of Ecosystem and Nature Lovers Association (EKODOSD).
However, the municipality responded positively to the hotel’s management when they asked for permission to use the area and a protocol was signed in March 2014 to appropriate part of the land for the facility.
The hotel management then began construction activities on the site with earth movers, which were not permitted under the protocol.
EKODOSD members submitted a petition to the municipality to cancel the protocol and stop the construction work in the area, which includes the habitat of endangered Mediterranean seals.
Following the appeal from EKODOSD, a new protocol was signed, narrowing the site assigned to the hotel and excluding the habitat of the seals.
The hotel once again raised tensions when it continued construction activities, despite being told to stop by the municipality.
A lawsuit had been opened for the cancelation of the protocol after activists filed an official complaint to the prosecutor’s office. The court ordered an examination of the area during the last hearing held on April 10.
The next hearing will be held on April 21.