By Mustafa Degirmencioglu

DENIZLI, Turkey

The Canal Istanbul will make Turkey a leading country and place it forward on global trade, the country’s environment minister said Saturday.

“Canal Istanbul is a project of protection and rescue of the Bosphorus, the freedom project of the Bosphorus,” Murat Kurum told a local party meeting in Denizli province.

The planned canal is meant to provide relief to shipping traffic between the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara, particularly oil tanker traffic, through the Bosphorus.

It is one of Turkey’s most strategic mega projects and plans to eliminate the rising risk posed by

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