Turkish intelligence, special forces conduct 20-day excavations in Turkey’s south
Ali Ekber Şen / Tolunay Duman - MERSİN
DHA PhotoExcavation work in a house in the southern province of Mersin’s Tarsus district has drawn much curiosity after continuing for 20 days under the direction of the special forces and the National Intelligence Agency (MİT), Doğan News Agency has reported.
The excavation works conducted by a team of experts from Ankara have been ongoing in a shanty-type house in the 82 Evler neighborhood of Tarsus. The street’s entrances were blocked by armored police vehicles, and the locals living in the neighborhood have been forced to enter after security checks. Buildings in the neighborhood are under surveillance by police forces, while snipers have been deployed to the roofs of buildings.
While the reasons for the excavations remain unknown, a number of claims have been proposed.
One of the claims pointed to the murder of police officer Mithat Erdal in 2012, who was killed while he was investigating a gang of historical artifact smugglers in Tarsus. The perpetrator of the murder, Hüseyin Yasak, was arrested and sentenced to 25 years in prison after he confessed to the officer’s murder.
Erdal’s wife recently claimed that the investigation into the case Erdal was following was hindered by other police officers, and he told her that he believed police officers were also involved in the crimes. She believed the excavations were related to her husband’s death as he often met with treasure hunters in a nearby area.
She claimed that her husband was killed by a crime gang conducting the smuggling activities.
Twenty people are reportedly working full-day on the excavations using high-equipped technological devices.
Official sources have not provided any information as to when the excavation works will be completed.