World Bulletin/News Desk
Turkish Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications Minister Binali Yildirim has said "Istanbul Canal" project will be presented to Prime Minister R.Tayyip Erdogan before the process of construction actually starts.
Visiting Anadolu Agency (AA) Editor's Desk on Wednesday, Yildirim said that his ministry has been preparing the construction side of the Canal Istanbul and the Ministry of Environment and Urbanization has been carrying out environmental planning.
Yildirim stressed that the two ministries were about to complete their works adding, "After we have presented the final situation to PM Erdogan (over the project), we will initiate the procedure of construction."
Yildirim said they have reviewed the opinions on the "Canal Istanbul" project whether it contradicts with Montreux Convention or Treaty of Lausanne, adding, "This issue is related with sovereignty rights of Turkey, and the project doesn't conflict with the Montreux Convention."
Those international treaties are the basis of international use of Turkey's straits. Canal Istanbul is expected to be an alternative route to Black Sea from Mediterrenean.
The project "Canal Istanbul", a new waterway for Istanbul, to link the Black Sea to the Marmara Sea which aims at reducing maritime traffic at Istanbul Strait, or Bosphorus, was announced by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on May 11. The canal will be built in the west of Istanbul.
Montreux Convention, (1936) agreement concerning the Dardanelles and Bosphorus. In response to Turkey’s request to refortify the area, the signers of the Treaty of Lausanne and others met in Montreux, Switzerland., and agreed to return the zone to Turkish military control. The convention allowed Turkey to close the straits to all warships when it was at war and to permit merchant ships free passage.
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“This is a positive development,” Turkish foreign ministry spokesperson has said