The former District Governor of Yeni Iskele Kemal Yilmaz, was sentenced on Wednesday to two months in prison for not obeying a court order during the period between 21 June 2016 and 6 April 2017.
Yilmaz was reported to have disregarded a court order to demolish 31 bungalows and restaurants built without permission on a protected site of archaeological and natural importance in the Golden Beach area.
During the hearing, around 300 people were gathered outside the court in support of Yilmaz, shouting slogans criticising the court. Meanwhile, there was a brief scuffle between the police and the protesters, who described the decision as “racist”.
Deputies of the National Unity Party (UBP) and the settlers’ Revival Party (YDP) attended the trial yesterday. YDP’s chairman Erhan Arikli expressed his support for Yilmaz. In a statement on his social media account, Arikli said: “We are by Kemal Yilmaz’s side. We have assigned our lawyer friends with the duty of appeal. I hope that the appeal will end the soonest”.
In 2013, Burhan Kalın and Gültekin Erdoğan were prosecuted for constructing illegal bungalows, restaurants, toilets and water wells built by on a natural archaeological site in the Golden Beach region of Dipkarpaz. Both men were found guilty and sentenced to three years. The defendants went to appeal and the prison sentences were reduced to one month.
Turkish Cypriot daily ‘Yeni Duzen’ reports that Yilmaz had been district governor during the UBP’s time in government. During the general elections held on 14 December, 2003, Yilmaz was elected as deputy for the UBP for the Yeni Iskele district and held office for one term.
Kibris, Yeni Duzen