Turkey: Land Grab Threatens Return of Minorities

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

By Joseph DeCaro

ANKARA (Worthy News)-- A lawyer in Diyarbakir estimated that land grabs have targeted thousands of Christians and Yazidis in southeastern Turkey, according to Al-Monitor.

They have even threatened the Yazidis if they try to return, Serhat Karasin told Al-Monitor.

Problems with property ownership were triggered by Turkey's modernization of its land registry records at a time when many Christians, Yazidis and Kurds were living in European exile after fleeing the Kurdish conflict. Many of them lost their property to the Turkish treasury, which is entitled to confiscate any land after it was fallow for 20 years.

A commission of legal experts have submitted a draft proposal to the Turkish government calling for it to mediate conflicts and compensate the victims of expropriations with treasury land.