Minister unveils initiative for expanding public access to beaches

Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change Minister Mehmet Özhaseki has announced initiatives to open new public beaches and eliminate illegal businesses and structures occupying coasts across the country, which has been a pervasive issue troubling the public.

Speaking to private broadcaster CNN Türk, Özhaseki introduced the 'Seas are for the People' campaign aiming to reclaim and protect coastal areas.

Emphasizing Türkiye's extensive coastline and its 555 blue flag beaches, he noted the country's third-place global ranking for such beaches, behind Spain and Greece.

Özhaseki highlighted the issue of non-compliance with the 50-meter coastal ban and announced a comprehensive survey to identify and demolish illegal structures.

The campaign focuses on urbanism, environment and climate change, with a mission to clear illegalities from Hatay in the south to Artvin in the north of the country, ensuring public access to the seas.

"We are scanning the coastlines. With the project, we will demolish all illegal structures... From the beginning to the end, we have transferred all our resources to the earthquake region since the earthquake happened," Özhaseki said.

"We are starting to clean up whatever illegalities, occupations, people that will prevent citizens from accessing the sea. We will establish a unit there and create public places."

The ministry, alongside the Culture and Tourism Ministry, will open and manage new public beaches, providing clean and accessible facilities.

"Public beaches are also being opened by the Culture and Tourism Ministry. I approved all of their requests. We will operate the beaches ourselves. What we will do there is to clean and meet people's daily needs."


Continue reading on: