The village of Hasankeyf located in the province of Batman in Southeast Turkey is the only place in the world that gathers nine of the ten criteria to be considered worldwide heritage by the UNESCO. However the Turkish government has accomplished no efforts these last years to offer its inclusion to the organization or to promote tourism in the region. The key reason in this lack of initiative is that the efforts hired by the state would harm his dam project who is supposed to entirely flood Hasankeyf along with 52 other villages and 15 small towns by 2016.

Planned for 2015-2016 the dam of Ilisu on the edges of the Tigris, will become the second biggest reservoir of water and the fourth hydro electrical power station of Turkey, with an annual production of 3,8 billions of kW / h.

It will destroy a unique historical site, where a mix of Assyrians, Roman and Ottoman monuments belong. Conflicts over water have long haunted the Middle East. Yet in the current fighting in Iraq and Syria, the major dams on the Tigris and Euphrates rivers are seen not just as strategic targets but also as powerful weapons of war.


Who? Mathias Depardon

From France

Docking July 4-9 in Arles

+ July 18-31 in the Hub

Working on Gold Rivers

About conflicts over water in Turkey





Professional photography & marketing consultant and fellowship director at MIAP


I felt that Mathias Depardon with his story ‘Gold Rivers’ would be the perfect match for Docking Station for various reasons. Mathias is a very talented photographer and the story that he is working on is very interesting because it touches upon so many different important issues at stake in Turkey today; environmental, social-economical as well as political. With Turkey being very much in the centre of the current news, it’s stories like this that give us a deeper insight that goes beyond what we normally see from there. Mathias furthermore has the perfect personality as he is curious and eager to learn and connect with new people.