By Halil Ibrahim Sincar
Turkey has completed the restoration of 11 out of 23 historic structures, including mosques and churches, in its southeastern provinces.
Many of the historic sites in Diyarbakir and Mardin provinces were severely damaged during attacks by the PKK terror group, which also dug trenches for fortification.
The terrorists were defeated following successful security operations, and the process to restore the historic sites is in its concluding phase.
The restored structures include Zeynel Abidin Mosque and Complex, and Hasirli Mosque.
The remaining sites, including the Fatih Pasha (also known as Kursunlu) Mosque, the Armenian Catholic Church, the Selman Pak Mosque and a shrine in Diyarbakir will be completed by the end of 2018.
The Prime Ministry’s Directorate General of Foundations is undertaking the restoration work.
Metin Evsen, regional head of the directorate, told Anadolu Agency that attacks on places of worship are unacceptable.
“In Mardin’s Nusaybin district, three structures were damaged. We have completed the restoration of Zeynel Abidin mosque and complex. Including the three [in Mardin], 23 structures were damaged. Most of the restoration work has been complete. We will complete restoration of the remaining 12 structures during 2018,” Evsen said.
“The [terror] attacks have united the nation,” he said.
“We have restored both the mosques and churches. Of the four churches damaged in [Diyarbakir’s] Surici, two of them belong to the Directorate General of Foundations. The restoration of Armenian Protestant Church has been completed and opened. We plan on completing the restoration of Armenian Catholic Church within 2018,” he added.
Ahmet Ersan, Nusaybin district head of Union of Religious Foundation Workers’ Cooperation, said: “Our government is healing the wounds. We deeply thank all of the authorities.”
Zennure Abak, a local from Diyarbakir, expressed gratitude for the restoration of Zeynel Abidin Mosque and said: “We appreciate what our government is doing for us.”