Welcome to our pick of last week’s news from Fethiye and around Turkey.
Dalaman and Göcek fire – one year later
It’s been a year since a massive fire engulfed forests in Göcek and Dalaman destroying between 350 and 400 hectares of forest.
The fire started on July 10, 2019 in the Karacaağaç neighborhood near Dalaman and Göcek.,
520 firefighters, 20 helicopters, 105 water tankers, and 18 bulldozers worked hard to battle the flames, which spread towards Fethiye as a result of strong winds. By the morning of July 11 the fire had been brought under control however, flared up again due to high winds. The fire was finally extinguished on Friday 12.
Works were started in the region immediately after the fire by the Muğla Regional Directorate of Forestry and three months later the area was ready for reforestation.
The first saplings were planted on 11 November 2019 as part of the ‘Breath for the Future” campaign when 11 million saplings were planted across Turkey in an hour, setting the world record.
One year later, the area was filmed by drone and compared with one week after the fire.
Environmental clean up in Kayaköy
The roadsides in Fethiye’s Kayaköy Neighborhood were cleaned by municipal workers and volunteers on Thursday.
The cleaning took place from the village square in Kayaköy to the entrance to Gemiler Bay.
Muhtar Metin Ekiz thanked those who participated in the cleaning and said, “Our village is a tourism village. We will do these campaigns frequently. We cleaned everything from the entrance of Kayaköy to Gemiler Bay. We ask holidaymakers and citizens to take their waste home with them.”
Turkey’s new police branch to protect animals and nature starts training
The Environment, Nature and Animal Protection Directorate, a newly formed branch of the Turkish police, started training Wednesday. The branch aims to protect wildlife and animals from abuse and other crimes.
Designated police officers attired khaki t-shirts and will carry animal handling equipment. They will be aided by an app called Haydi, which is currently being developed. It will enable citizens to report crimes against animals.
The legislation that enabled the new force has been in the works for a few years, but the process sped up last year as Turkey was shocked by a series of animal murders and mutilations, with many of the perpetrators getting away with fines alone.
Animal rights activists have long campaigned for violence against animals to be categorized as a crime instead of misconduct, in addition to aggravated penalties.
Hagia Sophia to open for worship
Hours after a landmark court ruling on Friday, the Turkish government confirmed that Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia will be reopened for worship after an 85-year hiatus.
The nearly 1,500-year-old architectural gem will be transferred to the state Religious Affairs Directorate under a presidential decree, according to a Friday announcement in the Official Gazette.
Earlier 0n Friday, ruling on a petition filed by an Istanbul NGO, Turkey’s Council of State overturned a 1934 Cabinet decree that had turned Hagia Sophia into a museum.
The court ruled that Hagia Sophia was owned by a foundation established by Sultan Mehmet II, also known as Mehmet the Conqueror, and was presented to the community as a mosque. According to the ruling, Hagia Sophia was defined as a “mosque,” a status that cannot be legally changed.
After centuries of use as a church under the Byzantine Empire, in 1453 Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque by Mehmet II following his conquest of Istanbul.
In 1935, Hagia Sophia was turned into a museum.
Ministry bans smoking near Salda Lake
As part of measures to protect Lake Salda, known as “Turkey’s Maldives” due to its crystal clear water, smoking will be prohibited starting Aug. 10 on its white sandy beaches.
Ümit Turan, an official from Directorate General for Preservation of Natural Heritage, said that as of Aug.1, visitors will be cautioned not to smoke in designated areas on the shores of the lake.
“After August 10, warning signs will be placed in some areas. Visitors will able to smoke in designated areas away from the shore,” he said.
Turkish authorities had previously restricted road traffic and construction around Lake Salda.
The lake in the northwestern Burdur province, in southern Turkey, has been a popular destination for tourists in recent years for its white beach and clear water.
Source: Daily Sabah
Thank you to Brian Lloyd for the Fethiyespor updates
Playoff decision for TFF 2nd and 3rd League
As a result of the Turkey Football Federation’s decision to cancel the remaining league matches, the TFF 2nd and 3rd leagues will end the season as follows:
League leaders will be promoted to the next league. 2nd, 3rd and 4th teams will play off with the winning team promoted to the next league. The bottom two teams will be relegated. The play offs will take place between July 20th and 28th.
Here’s a reminder of how the league table currently stands, with Fethiyespor in 8th position.
The Fethiyespor team celebrated another birthday this week.
Happy Birthday to midfielder Turgay An who celebrated his 33rd birthday on Wednesday 8 July.
For more information about Fethiyespor please visit Fethiyespor Yabancilar on Facebook
Turkish Lira (TL) exchange rates
The British Pound bought 8.66 TL by the close of business on Friday. The week before it was selling for 8.56 TL.
The US Dollar bought 6.86 TL by the close of business on Friday. The week before it was selling for 6.86 TL.
The Euro bought 7.75 TL by the close of business on Friday. The week before it was selling for 7.72 TL.
Here’s your weather forecast for the week ahead.
Source: Living Earth
Today’s featured image: “A choppy sea at İztuzu” by Lyn Ward