29 Eylül 2014 Pazartesi

"Armenian Village" Ad Lures Treasure Hunters

turkce links to original Turkish article

(Sabah Newspaper, 29 September 2014)

//ed. note: conventional wisdom in Turkey says that wherever
the Armenians once lived they buried gold and jewels there
before leaving.//

Define avcılarına 'Ermeni köyü' yalanı
Karsak village - there's gold (supposedly) in them there hills...

The land in Guvenli village, in Bursa's Gemlik district, and in
Karsak village of nearby Orhangazi district, has become very
popular of late.  The reason for this is the foxiness of a real
estate firm.  The firm bought land near Karsak village, a 700
year-old hamlet where Armenians lived,  and put out an ad on
an internet site offering 'land in a 700 year-old Armenian village.'
Four separate land offerings were made in the ad for the parcel,
which amounts to a total of about 7 acres.

The mention of an 'Armenian village' in the ad increased interest
on various other sites and a French one , 'armenews', picked it
up, as well. Mete S. of the real estate firm stated that "when we
bought the land we were told that Armenians used to live here
so in order to increase the attractiveness of the ad we include
this aspect. There's no question that the entire village is to be
sold and the mention of the "entire village" up for sale on some
foreign internet sites disturbed us, too.  For this reason we may
remove the ad but there have been a record number of hits on
the ad. The parcels haven't been sold yet but the villagers are
holding out and not selling land for 10 times more than the
former price of 2,000TL ($1,000)."

The residents of Guvenli and Karsak villages don't like the
idea that land in their villages is being described in the ad
as land in an "Armenian village".  The headman of Guvenli
village, Hasan Elbuken, stated that "our village is not an
Armenian village. It's old name is Asayis village. It's a
place that was settled when Turks came from the Balkans
in the repatriation process (during and after the Balkan
Wars around 1910-12.)  The Armenians lived in Karsak
village, which is about 3 kilometers from us."

Mucahit Unver, an 80 year-old resident of Karsak village,
said that "this village was establish in the 1300's. Turks
and Armenians lived here together. It cannot be said that
it's a completely Armenian village because Turks have
also lived here for centuries. Our Turkish grandfathers were
neighbors with the Armenians. There are still a few Armenian
structures here but most have come down. There's only
one home standing where someone lived until 10 years ago.
No its empty and will probably be torn down soon. I think
the real estate firm wanted to attract attention by calling
our village an "Amenian village".

Eyup Barak, who runs a coffeehouse in the village and
works in real estate,as well, said that "the land in the village
has increased in value 300% in the past three years because
the new Izmir highway passes just below the village. About
95% of the land in Karsak has been sold. There's no land
left where warehouses are situated and there are olive
fields left in the village."

    Gemlik and Orhangazi districts are in the north.

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