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Our Committee is raising funds to create a lasting legacy telling the story of Lemnos' link to Gallipoli and Australia's Anzac story. Our projects include the Lemnos Gallipoli Memorial in Albert Park, the publication of a major new historical and pictorial publication and more. To make a donation you can also deposit directly by direct debit into the Committee's bank account: Account Name: Lemnos Gallipoli Commemorative Committee Inc; Bank: Delphi Bank; Account No: 204299-020 BSB No: 941300; Include your surname in the reference section. For further information on our legacy projects or to make a donation please contact either Lee Tarlamis 0411553009 or Jim Claven 0409402388M

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Lemnos Çanakkale Tourism Conference Supports Anzac Tourism Action

The view of the famous Sphinx formation, above Anzac Cove, at the Gallipoli peninsula, the scene of such bloody fighting in 1915. Hopefully tourists will soon be able to visit Anzac sites such as this and on Lermnos more easily due to the work of the Lemnos and Çanakkale authorities and businesses. Photo Jim Claven 2013.
All of us who support Lemnos' efforts to build commemorative Anzac tourism will welcome the outcome of the first Lemnos Çanakkale Tourism Conference, held at Çanakkale in Turkey last weekend, 19-20th January 2014.
Çanakkale from the ferry to Gallipoli. Photo Jim Claven 2013
A view of the famous "Narrows" separating the Gallipoli peninsula from Çanakkale - the site of famous naval battles in 1915, including the successful voyage of Australia's AE2 submarine. Photo Jim Claven 2013

The Conference brought together municipal government and tourism industry representatives from both Lemnos and Çanakkale in Turkey. The Lemnos Municipality was represented there (including the Deputy Mayor Demetri Boulotis) and tourism representatives from Lemnos (including Stelios Mantzaris, the manager of the major Varos Village Hotel and Resort).
The Conference participants resolved their main purpose in coming together: "The main purpose of this organisation is the development of  cooperation areas between Çanakkale and Lemnos in order to add economic and cultural value to both sides.  Doing so, joint development of tourism and trade and the exchange of education and cultural activities are the main point of interest. All and all, to build up a long lasting friendship of Turkey and Greece would be the core output"
Çanakkale town at night. Photo Jim Claven 2013

This new spirit of cooperation is to be commended.

The main outcome is a commitment to encourage tourism between Gallipoli and Lemnos in the run-up to the Centenary in 2015. They identify a range of things they want to progress so they can encourage Anzac tourism (as well as Turkish tourism to Lemnos and vice-verse). The specific measures adopted are: 
  • Improved temporary tourism visa arrangements, with a visa office requested to be opened at Çanakkale and on Lemnos;
  • The development of common tourism programs, including the facilitation of Anzac tourism and other tourism products (such as cultural tourism associated with the Ottoman era Niyazi Mısri Muslim scholar). The latter includes the establishment of a cultural centre and infrastructure restoration on the Niyazi Misri tomb;  
  • Participation in each others festivals, including invitations to Imbros authorities to participate (with specific examples cited);   
  • Educational exchange programs;  
  • Request for 12 months continuous and stable transportation for mutual development of trade and cooperation on both sides, as well as air links between Lemnos and Çanakkale .  
The participants agreed to take action to further these proposals at a government and business level, and will meet again on Lemnos in 6-7th April 2014.
A copy of Conference Press Release is available in English by clicking here. And in Greek by clicking here.
This Conference and its outcomes is significant. Not only is it the first such conference but it has given a real commitment to economic cooperation between Lemnos and Turkey. It augurs well for Lemnos and hopefully it will benefit from tourism as other Aegean Islands near Turkey do - such Lesvos, Samos, Chios, Kos and Rhodes.
The current port at Plaka on Lemnos' north western coast, close to Imbros and Çanakkale . Could this be the location for a new fast sea transport connection to Çanakkale and Gallipoli? Photo Jim Claven 2013
Congratulations to the Lemnos Municipality, Lemnos Hoteliers Association and their Turkish counterparts in Çanakkale for creating this important initiative. And especially to the work of Demetri and Stelios - good friends of the Lemnos Gallipoli Commemorative Committee.

Jim Claven
Secretary
Lemnos Gallipoli Commemorative Committee

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