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Turkey's mysterious fires spark investigation

Turkey is investigating whether arson is the cause of fires along Turkey's Mediterranean coast.

ISTANBUL — Mysterious fires that destroyed 125 hectares (309 acres) of woodland on an idyllic stretch on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast and a historic palace in Istanbul in recent days have raised concerns that property speculators may be trying to open up land for development. The opposition is raising the issue in parliament.

Official investigations into what started the fires, both of which occurred in late June, are continuing. But critics say there have been several incidents in recent years in which prime properties destroyed by fire were later opened for high-value construction projects.

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