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Damned either way

Letters to the editor

I have been following events, in local and international publications, surrounding the controversial plan to construct a dam on the Tigris River. So far all articles, especially those contained in technical journals, refer to environmental, geotechnical and financial issues associated with the scheme. Other publications and general media refer mainly to matters concerning historical, ethical and political importance.

It is vital that all these issues be considered, and usually they are, for most hydroelectric schemes.

The article (NCE 4 March) clearly stated the current status of the project. However, I was very disappointed with the political nature of the article referring to the region's population as 'persecuted Kurds'.

My grievance is that NCE has chosen to refer to the region's population as being predominantly Kurd and that it is they alone who are persecuted. The region's Turks can not be very happy with the disruption caused by hydroelectric schemes either.

I believe that this article would not have been reported in the same manner if the recent events surrounding capture of the PKK leader had not been headline news.

The Turkish government has to make a very tough decision. If the project is stopped then perhaps it will be seen to shy away from investing in an area that so desperately needs it, ie investing in the Kurdish region. Alternatively they are 'persecutors'.

Whatever your political inclinations please refrain from adding your views on what I consider is a very sensitive technical subject.

Faruk Pekbeken (G), project engineer, Industry & Defence,

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