One bureaucrat living in the western province of Kocaeli’s Iraq Arızlı Houses moved out of her home Saturday due to protests by other residents at the site, which was built for survivors of the 1999 Marmara earthquake.
Quake survivors living in the Iraq Arızlı Houses have been protesting the governor’s office for some time, saying they are being removed from their houses to make room for officials to live there.
Emine Pekin, the real estate director for the Kocaeli Special Province Administration, left the flat she had been living in Saturday. National Education Director Nevzat İspirli has said he will leave his home as well.
“He has been looking for another house,” said Orçun Demir, one of the quake survivors.
Some media reports had alleged that İspirli had been using two lodging houses at the same time, one in Istanbul’s Şişli district and the other in Iraq Arızlı Houses.
The Kocaeli housing development was built with a donation from former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein that was dedicated for building houses for quake survivors.
People who had lost their homes, and, often, their relatives, in the Marmara quake were settled in the houses in 2001.
There are 257 flats in Arızlı Houses. To date, 41 flats have been evacuated when their residents did not pay rent, the Kocaeli Special Administration said, adding that no quake survivors had been removed in order to settle bureaucrats there instead.