ANKARA-Turkish Daily News
The rector of Middle East Technical University, or METU, issued a challenge to Ankara's mayor, saying that if the mayor thinks he is strong enough, he should come wipe METU off the map, during a press conference yesterday.
Ankara Mayor Melih Gökçek announced last week that the municipality would destroy some METU buildings because he claimed they were illegally built. In response to the accusations, the school's rector, professor Ural Akbulut, said none of the buildings on METU land have deficiencies in building structure and stressed that METU is the first university in the world to have a master plan.
Akbulut also added that some work on the building scheme for some structures was already completed during former Mayor Murat Karayalçın's term, while the work is still underway for some of the other buildings. �We have already started to work with Çankaya Municipality to complete the rest of the schemes. However, Gökçek is trying to get power by abusing a new legislation which was enacted in 2004,� Akbulut argued, pointing out that most of METU's buildings were constructed in the 1960s.
Akbulut claimed that the problem has appeared because Gökçek wants 40 percent of METU's extensive land holdings.