Hatay residents who lost homes to forest fire await gov’t aid weeks later

Burcu Özkaya Günaydın / DUVAR

Residents of the southernmost Turkish province of Hatay who lost their homes in forest fires that scorched through the region want officials to help them in restoring their lives, but have not received any support yet.

A massive fire broke out in Hatay’s Belen district on Oct. 9 and was brought under control on Oct. 10 after over 30 hours, damaging the public housing complexes in the area, which the governor’s office promised to compensate residents for.

Semira Yersiz (right) says that local non-governmental organizations often deliver supplies to the area to help out residents who lost their homes.

Residents Semira and Suphi Yersiz lost their home in the fire, and are staying in their son’s home nearby as no work to rehabilitate their house has begun in the past three weeks.

Yersiz’ daughter Meryem Yersiz said that they barely saved their lives in the fire, and that everything in their home had been destroyed.

“Every official that visits says that they’re going to rehabilitate the house,” Semira Yersiz said, adding that they often receive visits from the governor, the mayor and the district mayor who reassure them each time that work will begin soon.

The officials who visit the housing complex merely take pictures and leave, Yersiz family member Tuncay Ataç said, but take no action to show the families that they care about them.

Resident Fikret Bingöl and his 10 children also lost their home in the fire, but didn’t even have a tent to sleep in for the first two days as the elected neighborhood leader lagged behind in alerting the necessary officials.

Although the district governor’s office supplied some 5,000 Turkish Liras as aid, 4,500 liras of that were confiscated in Bingöl’s case due to an outstanding debt to the state.

“I had 500 liras left. Winter is coming, we don’t know what we’re going to do,” the father said.

from Duvar English https://ift.tt/3mvI1A9
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About CHP EU Representation

The CHP was founded on 9 September 1923, about one and half month before the proclamation of the Republic of Turkey. The first President of modern Turkey’s oldest party was M. Kemal Atatürk. Today CHP is a social-democratic party, member of the Socialist International and associate member of the Socialist Group at the European Parliament. The scope of the CHP bureau in Brussels is not limited to the bilateral framework of Turkey's EU accession process. Issues such as the information society, energy policies, social development, climate change, international trade and security are among the different focus areas. The EU-Turkey relations are about integration and need multiple, plural and horizontal channels of communication. The CHP supports and promotes Turkey's EU membership process also by being more present and active in Brussels The CHP's Representative to the EU is Ms Kader Sevinç who previously worked as an MEP advisor at the European Parliament and in the private sector.
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