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This 12,000-Year-Old Town Could Soon Be Underwater

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Written by News For Turkey

This 12,000-Year-Old Town Could Soon Be Underwater

According to Huffington Post, Extraordinary photos document the Turkish town of Hasankeyf before it’s flooded by a dam.

An ancient Turkish town along the Syrian border is on the verge of destruction. But not because of war or extremism.

Hasankeyf is tucked along the banks of the Tigris River. The area is littered with history: neolithic caves, Roman ruins and medieval monuments. Yet this precious example of Mesopotamian history will almost inevitably disappear once an enormous new dam is installed.

Some 78,000 people, the majority of whom are Kurds, live in this region and will be displaced once the Ilisu Dam is finished. It’s unclear exactly when the area will be flooded, but the new structure is already more than 80 percent complete.

PASCAL MANNAERTS
Hasankeyf’s historic treasures will be submerged once the construction of the Ilisu Dam is complete.

At 12,000 years old, many say that Hasankeyf meets all the criteria to be deemed a UNESCO World Heritage site. But Turkey has not officially applied for heritage status.

Last year, Belgian photographer Pascal Mannaerts documented what could be the town’s final days. Here are some of his images.

PASCAL MANNAERTS
Between 25,000 and 78,000 people living in the Hasankeyf district of Batman Province in Turkey will be forced to move because of the Ilisu Dam.

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News For Turkey

News For Turkey is a news guide for Turkey. It gives small pieces of news and analysis around the world about Turkey.

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