Ecology organisations have issued a public statement protesting against the forest fires in Mount Cudi.
Several forest fires have been raging over the past three months in the Mount Cudi area in the district of Şırnak (Şirnex) after ‘military operations’ of the Turkish armed forces. Hundreds of trees and extensive wildlife habitats have been destroyed. The forest fires that have been extinguished were put out by residents acting on their own, without state support or assistance.
The Ecology Council of the Peoples’ Democratic Congress (HDK), alongside the organisations Pollen Ecology, Kaz Mountains Istanbul Solidarity and Children of Nature, stated that they had wanted to make statements in front of Kadıköy Süreyya Opera house concerning the state’s failure to intervene in the forest fires in Mount Cudi for the past three months, but they had been prevented from doing so by the police.
The ban on making statements there had been imposed by the Kadıköy District Governorship on the grounds of securing public health during the pandemic. Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Istanbul MP’s Musa Piroğlu, Züleyha Gülüm, Provincial co-chair Elif Bulut and provincial administrators also supported the statement.
HDP MP Züleyha Gülüm said that the decisions to ban the ecology groups and others from making public protest statements were taken arbitrarily. Governors and district governors take illegal decisions and try to prevent social opposition. She said: “They are trying to prevent us from making our voice heard. However, what has been happening in Cudi for three months destroys nature, ecology and living things. And it actually kills our future. We will protect our future wherever it is. We will not allow them to plunder our forests, streams and mountains”.