* Photograph: AA
Click to read the article in Turkish
The 10th Chamber of the Council of State has rejected the lawsuit filed by the Ministry of Forestry and Water Affairs and the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, which requested the revision of the verdict which cancelled the projects foreseeing the construction of four dams and five hydroelectric power plants as well as the Mercan Reg. hydroelectric power plant on the Munzur Valley National Park in the province of Dersim.
The court previously ruled that no approval or permit can be given for the related projects "unless a positive environmental impact assessment (ÇED) report or a decision stating that there is no necessity for the ÇED is issued." The 10th Chamber of the Council of State has repeated its ruling and rejected the requests of the ministries.
Speaking about the ruling of the Council of State, attorney Barış Yıldırım, the Chair of Dersim Bar Association, which appealed to the court against the approval given for projects, has stated,
"In this way, a historic decision has been made in terms of both the Munzur Valley National Park and the Law of National Parks."
"It is a duty of the state to prevent environmental pollution"
In its ruling, the 10th Chamber of the Council of State has referred to the related articles of the Constitution as well as the Law no. 2872 and emphasized that everyone has the right to live in a healthy and balanced environment, adding that it is the duty of the state as well as the citizens to protect environmental health and to prevent environmental pollution.
The first lawsuit was filed in 2011
Dersim Bar Association filed a lawsuit against the decision of the Ministry permitting the projects which have foreseen the construction of four dams and six hydroelectric power plants in the Munzur Valley National Park in Dersim on December 19, 2011.
The court case filed by attorney Barış Yıldırım was rejected by the Ankara 3rd Administrative Court on October 10, 2013.
The 10th Chamber of the Council of State assessed the request of appeal submitted for the reversal of the verdict of rejection and ruled for the reversal of the verdict which was given by the Ankara 3rd Administrative Court. (PT/SD)
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