Mine exploration activities carried out around the rural area in Kurşunlu (Pirejman) in Diyarbakır’s (Amed) Dicle district has hit the local agricultural production hard in the surrounding villages.
Ölmez Eastern Mining Transport Industry and Trade Limited Company, is known for its proximity to the government and is extracting several types of valuable minerals from the region.
According to Mesopotamia Agency (MA), citizens living in the surrounding villages complain about these activities. Villagers say ‘Vineyards, gardens and fields have all dried up and the soil has become unable to produce crops.’
Agriculture is the only livelihood
“The rocks extracted from the mountains by dynamite blasts were then processed with stone crushing machines. The dust and smoke of these blasts has caused vineyards, gardens and fields to dry up,” said Hüseyin Esen, one of the villagers living in Kurşunlu District, “The vineyards and trees of almonds, pears and apples we planted do not give fruit anymore and that agriculture has come to a standstill.”
The villager added that the trees in a large forest area in the region were cut down due to mininig activities, adding that mining activities negatively affected their villages as well as Kırkpınar (Heridan) and Gelincik (Ersek).
The villagers filed a complaint to the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources on January 25, 2020. Turkish government officials visited the region for investigation on December 28, but they have not showed any results, MA reports.
Ölmez Mining Company conducts mining activities in 13 areas in Turkey. The company has 9 mine exploration and production mines in Hakkari (Colemerg) and 4 of them in Dicle district of Diyarbakır.