Istanbul Municipality teams threatened by gun during works to demolish illegal cafes on Üsküdar coast

Istanbul Municipality teams have been threatened by gun during their works to demolish illegal cafes on the Üsküdar coast. The person, who was determined to be a relative of one of the cafe owners, was detained.

Duvar English

Teams of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (İBB) early on April 19 started the demolition works of illegal cafes on the Üsküdar coast. 

Municipal police however faced the reaction of cafe owners, with one person mounting at the top of one of the cafes with his gun and instructing demolition teams to stop their works.

İBB spokesperson shared a footage showing the person holding the gun with the post of: “Who is this person with the gun? What is happening at the illegal cafes in Üsküdar?”

Üsküdar police launched an investigation into the incident and detained the person known by the initials of T.S., who was determined to be a relative of one of the cafe owners. The gun was also determined to be unlicensed.  

After the tension, the İBB teams continued on with their works and completed the demolition.

Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu also commented on the issue in a tweet, saying: “We have been successful in our struggle against illegal cafes next to Kuşkonmaz Mosque. Despite all prevention efforts, we have brought the nation’s property to the nation again. Best wishes to Üsküdar.”

The İBB had previously taken a decision to demolish the relevant illegal cafes as they were constructed in violation of the zoning plan. The cafe owners had appealed the İBB’s decision at a court, but their demand was turned down, with the court finding the municipality justified.

The İBB teams had wanted to start the demolition works on April 10, but their works were then prevented by the police assigned by the Üsküdar district governor’s office.