Environmentalists have called for mining licenses given for Turkey’s Kirazlı village in the northwestern province of Çanakkale to be revoked.
On the 82nd day of what they call a “Watch for Water and Conscience,” the environmentalists held a press meeting in the province. “Although it is a promising progress that the ministry has not renewed the license of, our demand is that licenses be cancelled,” read the press statement on Oct. 15.
“The point we have reached now is the result of the righteous struggle of hundreds of thousands of people…The region should be accepted under the category of ‘special places that needs protection,’” said the statement prepared by Prof. Dr. Murat Türkeş.
The press meeting came after the Energy and Natural Resources Ministry did not renew mining concessions given to the Canadian gold company of Alamos Gold in the region.
Alamos said on Oct. 14 that while mining concessions have not been revoked and can be renewed after the expiration date, no more construction can be completed until the renewal of the concessions.
“Given the uncertainty around the timing of the concession renewal, initial production from Kirazlı has been delayed from the previous guidance of late 2020,” Alamos said in its release.
The company also said that there has been false information on their gold mining project that went viral on social media.
In August, about 5,000 people flooded the area in the vicinity of the proposed mine, protesting deforestation associated with the project and the company’s planned use of cyanide at the Kirazlı mine. Cyanide is widely used in the mining industry to treat ore in contained facilities.
“It appears that the government did not want to provoke opposition to the project by granting the renewal at this time,” Credit Suisse mining analyst Tariq Fahad wrote late Oct. 14 in a note to clients.
Alamos completed the necessary applications in 2010 for exploration of gold and silver mines in the Kirazlı-Balaban region, 30 kilometers from the center of Çanakkale and 40 kilometers from Kaz Mountains.