İstanbul Botanical Garden will be evacuated
İstanbul University’s Botanical Garden is about to be evacuated as it is officially allocated to the İstanbul Mufti’s Office, Sözcü newspaper wrote on Sunday.
The garden is to be moved elsewhere as its land belonged to the office of the Shaykh al-Islam, the top Islamic authority in Ottoman times.
“They should not waste our national treasure. The office of the Mufti can move anywhere, but for us evacuation means the death of our plants,” Prof. Muammer Ünal, an academic on botanics in İstanbul University told Sözcü.
Accoriding to Ünal, around 400 tree species and five thousand plan species are under risk because of the decision to move the garden.
The Botanical Garden was opened 1935 for educational purposes and named after Prof. Dr. Alfred Heilbronn who contributed to the garden plan and the greenhouse projects. It is the oldest botanical garden in Turkey and is located in Beyazıt in İstanbul’s old city.