Illisu dam (with journalist Nicole Graaf)
The dam of Illisu is located on the Tigris river in the province of Batman, Southeast Turkey. It is planned to be finished in 2016 or 2017, it will be the 4th hydro electrical power station and the 2nd biggest water reservoir in Turkey. It is part of the GAP (Anatolia Project of southeast Turkey), a huge territory planning project involving a total of 22 dams on the Euphrates and Tigris rivers.
This massive government project will result in the destruction of more than 400 kilometers of the Tigris’ ecosystem and will lead to the relocation of about 60,000 people.
On top of these environmental and human consequences, the construction of the dam will also affect the political relations between Turkey and neighboring Iraq and Syria : both middle-east countries have accused the turkish government to control illegally the water flow of the Tigris and the Euphrates, two rivers on which already dried out Iraq and Syria strongly depend on for their crops and farming activities.