Chopping of Trees Restart on Ida Mountains

Ida Mountains Natural and Cultural Assets Preservation Association Chairperson has said the tree felling is within the knowledge of the Forest Management Directorate.

Cutting of trees restarted on Ida (Kaz) Mountains, Canakkale, where the Alamos Gold firm was building a gold mine.

Stating that the company's mining license expired and the company has stopped its activities, Ida Mountains Natural and Cultural Assets Preservation Association Chairperson Suheyla Dogan, said, "The security forces whom we called to the cutting area said that cutting of trees is within the knowledge of Bayramic Forest Management Directorate. It was being carried out by a private company, in the name of the administration. For this reason, they did not take any action."

Within the boundaries of the Kirazli Gold Mine Project Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) area, 197 thousand trees were cut down according to the TEMA Foundation, while the Association of Foresters of Turkey stated that 347 thousand trees were cut down and the ecosystem in a two-hectare area was destroyed.

Speaking to bianet, Suheyla Dogan said, "347 thousand trees have been cut so far. It is still continuing."

"We had filed a criminal complaint"

Recalling that they had filed a criminal complaint at the Canakkale Chief Public Prosecutor's Office, Dogan said the following:

"According to the EIA Report, 45 thousand trees were predicted to be cut down and before the legal process was completed, cutting of trees started despite being against the EIA. We and various organizations requested the slaughter be stopped by submitting petitions to the Canakkale Governorship and Canakkale Regional Directorate of Forestry.

"The operation license of Dogu Biga Mining Inc., which is a subcontractor of Alamos Gold, expired on October 13 and the license period was not extended by the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources. The company had also announced that it stopped its activities. but despite all this, we see that tree felling continues.

"We have documented with video and photographs that the cutting of trees continues. We collectively filed a criminal complaint at the Canakkale Chief Public Prosecutor's Office on October 30. However, public administrations have not taken any action so far, they were a mere spectator."

"The security forces whom we called to the cutting area said that cutting of trees is within the knowledge of Bayramic Forest Management Directorate. It was being carried out by a private company, in the name of the administration. For this reason, they did not take any action."

"An already ruined ecosystem..."

"The area is not currently under any valid license. What kind of a conscience permits further slaughter of an already ruined ecosystem?

"Regardless of which forest administration is responsible for this, Bayramic Forest Management Directorate or Canakkale Forest Regional Directorate, we call it to immediately halt the cutting of trees and the Canakkale Chief Public Prosecutor's Office to take necessary actions against those responsible."

Mayor: The slaughter should end immediately

Canakkale Mayor Algur GAlkhan also spoke to bianet, saying, "Our colleagues are following the issue. A criminal complaint was filed against the organizations responsible for cutting down trees. We don't know who cut it, but it is said that it is within the knowledge of the Forestry Directorate. We hope they stop this slaughter as soon as possible."

Source: English Bianet