Unhappy locals are having to leave behind their homes in the 12,000-year-old town of Hasankeyf, in southeast Turkey, as the ancient settlement is set to disappear under the waters of the newly built Ilsiu Dam's reservoir in coming months.
Suleyman Agalday gave his perspective as a resident of one of the oldest continuously inhabited towns in the world, on Tuesday, from his new home in nearby 'new... Еще Hasankeyf,' where the Turkish authorities have relocated many of the town's residents.
«I am absolutely not [happy], because I left everything there, my past, my elders, my childhood, my life, maybe my romances from my childhood and youth. Everything I have, I left behind there. This is just a new building,» Suleyman Agalday said.
Agalday added saying «The transportation bridge built in the 1960s will be under water. If you pay attention there, you see the fillings in front of the castle, up to 100 meters, that's how high the water will go, they will build an antique port there.»
Residents are relocating from the ancient city to 'new Hasankeyf,' a housing project initiated by the Turkish government some 1.5 km (1 mile) away from the old settlement and over 70 metres (200 feet) higher in elevation.
The Ilisu Dam is a key part of Turkey's southeastern Anatolia Project, designed to improve its poorest and least developed region in the country. It is expected to generate 4.1 billion kilowatt-hour electricity per year, contributing TL2 billion (€316/$350 million) to the Turkish economy on an annual basis.
Hasankeyf is just one of almost 200 settlements in the area that will be flooded once the dam's reservoir is filled, necessitating the displacement of tens of thousands of inhabitants.