İBB President Ekrem İmamoğlu issued a letter regarding the decision to transfer the Galata Tower, which is a municipal property, to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. In the open letter to the Minister of Culture and Tourism, Mehmet Nuri Ersoy, President Imamoglu emphasized that the historical building has been the property of Istanbul Municipality legal entity since 1855 and the decision is incompatible with the tradition of the nation's centuries-old foundations. Stating that the ministry has attempted to seize ten different properties of the municipality and does not apply to work together, Imamoglu said, “We will share these unlawful and unfair initiatives with the public and we will make sure that your ministry's attitudes are known by Istanbul.” Expressing that the eviction order of the Beyoğlu District Governorate is against the law, Imamoglu also reminded that the court process is continuing.
The open letter to Istanbul Metropolitan Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu, Minister of Culture and Tourism Mehmet Nuri Ersoy is as follows:
“Mr. Mehmet Ersoy
TR Minister of Culture and Tourism, Ankara
As Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, unfortunately, our efforts that we have been carrying out for a long time in order to develop a comprehensive agreement and cooperation ground between our municipality and your ministry regarding the use and operation of cultural and monumental assets in our city, especially Galata Tower.
The city of Istanbul cultural and prepare a master plan for the future about the monumental assets, instead of making this plan, the cooperation in every area of your ministry and eventually both Istanbul to work shoulder to shoulder for days when moving again Turkey's tourism industry, the actual date of your ministry, Due to the decision and intervention contrary to the universal principles of law and the essence of the understanding of the foundation, a point has been reached that wasted our resources and values.
Your Ministry's attitude towards the use of Galata Tower is wrong for three main reasons.
1. The point reached by the initiatives of your Ministry is historically wrong and unfair. Because the Galata Tower was built VI. Rome, which has accepted Istanbul as the capital since the century, is one of the most important iconic assets of this city since the times of Eastern Roman (Byzantine), Latin and Ottoman Empires. Instead of the cultural and touristic assets of Istanbul and the Metropolitan Municipality of Istanbul and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism together and implementing joint projects, to seize the assets with a unilateral will, both the future of this cherished city, the traditions of our state and the subject in question. historical heritage - will damage monumental structures.
While the restoration and museum conversion projects prepared and approved by the board in 2017 by the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality are known to the public and have become public and official with the Conservation Board decisions, the IMB projects approved by the Protection Council, controversial property lawsuits. and blocked within the framework of evacuation procedures.
If a museum and cultural route is planned to be established in and around Galata Tower, the details of this project are the subject of wonder whether the project's content has been approved by the Council of Monuments, why the project is hidden from the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality and why it has not been evaluated at the common mind table. Subjecting an unplanned-unscheduled investment to a historical heritage work such as the Galata Tower, causing damage to both the work and the function of the work, will lead to impossible consequences and may result in public losses due to the uncertainty of public resources.
2. The point reached by the initiatives of your Ministry is wrong and unfair within the framework of universal principles of law. Because the Galata Tower has been the property of the Istanbul Municipality legal entity since 1855, when the municipality was officially established in Istanbul, and was operated by the Istanbul Municipality legal entity or its affiliates during this period. Based on an unfounded interpretation of the universal principles of the law, Article 2008 of the Law on Foundations enacted in 30, which was used as a reason for the property relocation rather than preserving historical foundation cultural assets; and the ownership of the Galata Tower was transferred from Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality to the General Directorate of Foundations in May 2019 without any court decision, and the unlawful process was based on the current demands of your ministry. The title deed registration of the Galata Tower, which is the essential part of Istanbul's urban identity, cannot be made contrary to historical documents and by murdering the law. The lawsuit filed by Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality on this issue has not been concluded yet.
It is natural that the possession of the Galata Tower, which was not carried out during the former administration period of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, would be considered as a political maneuver carried out by your ministry in order to restrict the movement areas of the new administration and which does not fit into the understanding of unity of the state. .
3. The point reached by the initiatives of your Ministry is contrary to the tradition of our nation for hundreds of years, it is wrong and unfair in terms of foundation legislation. Because the Galata Tower did not occur through the foundation and is never a foundation cultural asset. Although it is known from all historical sources and documents that it was built in the 6th century, the transfer of the property of the IMM property of the Galata Tower to the General Directorate of Foundations over the notebook is subject to all kinds of legislation, practices; It is against the idea and values of the foundation. It is natural that it has not been proved by the General Directorate of Foundations that the Galata Tower occurred in any way. It is irrational and illegal to transfer the tower to the General Directorate of Foundations without relying on a valid and genuine document. For this reason, it is an abortion, to bear mind based on Article 30 of the Law on Foundations. Because Article 30 covers the works that are formed by the foundation entirely and that have cultural assets. The claim that the tower, which has not been voiced since 2008, is the so-called foundation cultural heritage, was put into operation 1 month after we started to work in whatever wisdom. We firmly believe that the law will operate and the court process will end with the registration of the Galata Tower property to the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality again.
It is not possible to understand all these wrong and unjustified attempts made by your Ministry in a hurry when the country is struggling with the Covid 19 epidemic and the deep economic crisis and it is not possible to reach the old density of tourism in the near future. As we do not understand why the voice of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism could not be heard while conducting operations such as murder.
Galata Tower, which is one of the most important iconic buildings of Istanbul for 1.500 years and owned by Istanbul Municipality for a minimum of 164 years, cannot be seized unfairly and illegally.
Since both sides are public administrations and the dispute between the parties is a dispute that needs to be resolved according to the law numbered 3533, the letter of the Beyoğlu District Governorate from the Galata Tower is contrary to the law and the law, as no decision of evacuation will be made pursuant to Article 2886 of the Law. As a matter of fact, despite the fact that the Council of State and the Regional Administrative Court Law Enforcement Offices have countless precedent decisions in this regard, our objection has been rejected.
Savings of your ministry seizing our properties by basing on Article 30 of the Law on Foundations and in unlawful ways are not limited to the Galata Tower and you have attempts to seize 10 different properties. We will share these unlawful and unfair initiatives with the public and ensure that the attitudes of your ministry are known to Istanbul justifiers.
I expect that the mistakes made by considering our evaluations on the subject will be returned immediately, and I wish you a healthy day and your work.
Ekrem İmamoğlu İstanbul Metropolitan Mayor