Ilısu Dam Campaign

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The Ilısu Dam Campaign is a UK-based campaign working to stop the construction of the Ilısu Dam on the river Tigris in south east Turkey. The construction plans for the dam would lead to the flooding of about 300 square kilometers and would displace between 25,000 and 78,000 people, in the Hasankeyf district of the Batman province.

Initial plans for the dam[edit]

The main purpose of the dam is the production of hydroelectric power, but it's also supposed to provide better irrigation for local agriculture. Those who oppose the dam claim that human rights and environmental issues have been disregarded in the planning. The dam would also lead to the drowning of hundreds of archeological sites, including the ancient town of Hasankeyf.

In 2002, the campaign won an important victory when it forced UK based company Balfour Beatty and other European companies, like Swedish based Skanska, to withdraw from the project. The companies involved in the project had applied for Export Credit Guarantees from their home governments, which meant that taxpayers money would be used to finance the project.

Current plans[edit]

The plans for the dam were not scrapped however, and in 2005 the project resurfaced. This time one of the main contractors of the dam is Austrian based VA TECH, a subsidiary of Siemens AG. According to the Turkish government, new resettlement plans are supposedly planned and a large fund is supposed to be set up to rescue some parts of the town of Hasankeyf by moving them elsewhere.

According to the opponents of the dam, these new plans do not adequately address the original concerns and as of August 2005 the campaign is still active.

See also[edit]

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