The Observers

Turkey: Soldiers fire tear gas at villagers protesting land, buildings razed for marble quarry

Residents of the village of Yurtbasi, in Eastern Turkey, went out to protest May 26 to try and stop a company that wants to demolish the buildings where they house their animals in order to build a marble quarry.
Residents of the village of Yurtbasi, in Eastern Turkey, went out to protest May 26 to try and stop a company that wants to demolish the buildings where they house their animals in order to build a marble quarry. © Observers

Residents of the village of Yurtbasi, in Eastern Turkey, turned out to protest on May 26 to try and stop a company from demolishing their barns in order to build a marble quarry. However, soldiers who accompanied the bulldozers aimed tear gas at protesters and fired warning shots using live ammunition.

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According to our Observer, human rights lawyer Mahmut Kacan, 25 barns were destroyed by the bulldozers and four villagers were apprehended by security forces. The company in charge of building the marble quarry needs to destroy the buildings on the land in order to get an environmental impact report for the mining project, Kacan says. However, many people in this area depend on animal agriculture and these stables as their only source of income.