The churches also file annulment action against expropriation

Various institutions file annulment actions against the urgent expropriation in Sur province of Diyarbakir. Syriac Foundation and Protestant Church filed annulment action against expropriation.

The cabinet decided for an urgent expropriation in Sur, where curfews continue. According to the decision published in the Official Journal on March 25, 6.300 plots of land in Sur are expropriated. 

Surp Giragos Church, the largest Armenian church in Middle East, Surp Sarkis Chaldean Church, Armenian Catholic Church, St. Mary Syriac Church and Protestant Church are among the places that are expropriated. 

While the reactions against the expropriation go on, annulment actions against cabinet decision started to be filed one after another. St. Mary Syriac Church and Protestant Church appealed to Council of State for annulment. 

Lawyer of both churches, Kadir Pekdemir gave information about the action. Pekdemir said that they requested annulment, because there is no public interest in the expropriation decision. 

“St. Mary Syriac Church and Protestant Church are places of worship; they are open to worship. And those properties belong to foundations. Because of these reason, the expropriation decision shouldn't have been made in the first place. So, we request annulment.”

And Surp Giragos Armenian Church Foundation will also file an annulment action, before the period of appeal ends. 

The municipality also filed an action

Diyarbakir Bar Association was the first institution that filed an action for annulment. After that, Diyarbakir Metropolitan Municipality also appealed to Council of State. The municipality filed an action against the urgent expropriation in Sur, because the province is in the area of responsibility of the municipality and another action about 174 properties belonging to the municipality, which are also included in the scope of the expropriation plan. 

Diyarbakir Metropolitan Municipality appealed to Council of State for stay of execution and annulment of the expropriation. 

In the petition for annulment, it is stated that this expropriation plan involves grave violations of right. It is pointed out that cabinet's decision is against law, principles of democratic and social state of law and principles of right of property, equality, housing and security of domicile.

“If the decision of cabinet wouldn't be annulled, almost 50.000 people would be displaced and turned into refugees inside the country. In the decision, it is stated that those properties are expropriated, because they are located in risk area and there is no other reason. In the decision, which was secretly made without informing 49.711 residents, local authorities, professional chambers, university and other related urban dynamics, it is uncertain whether there is public interest. With the implementation of this decision, there would be irreparable damages. This decision should be annulled immediately.”

Expropriation in other places continue

After the expropriation decision in Sur, despite the reactions, cabinet continues to make similar decisions. According to cabinet decision published in the Official Journal on April 11, a total of almost 100-square-meters land in Diyarbakir, Hakkari, Mardin and Şırnak is expropriated for establishing police posts.



About Author

Uygar Gültekin