Solar eclipse today; tourists surge into Turkey to view sun disappear
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The president of the National Earthquake Council, Professor Haluk Eyidogan, along with a group of professors from Yildiz Technical University, will visit Niksar in Anatolia, where many people, convinced that today's solar eclipse will precede an earthquake, are currently living in tents.
Noting that he and his group would be visiting Niksar on the invitation of the city mayor, Professor Eyidogan said that rumors of an impending quake in the region were spread by the help of people in his profession who went against ethical standards. Noting that every year the world sees nearly 150 earthquakes of 6 on the Richter scale or above, Professor Eyidogan said "With this many earthquakes, statistically, it is always possible to find one which has occured either right before or right after an eclipse of the sun or moon. But there has been no scientific evidence found that can actually link these events with earthquakes."
The eclipse, which will be only 87% visible at 13.57 from Istanbul today, can be best viewed in Turkey from a number of cities starting in the south from Anatalya, cutting a wide swath through Anatolia, and ending up in the Black Sea city of Giresun. 3 viewing centers have been set up in Antalya, where tourism representative report that 50 thousand Turkish and 100 thousand foreign tourists have arrived to watch the solar eclipse. Meanwhile, NASA space center officials have set up a telescope and video feed from the Side Antique Ampitheater so that viewers from the US can watch the eclipse. There is also a chamber music concert planned for the Apollo Temple in Side, which will provide enthusiasts with both a cultural and a natural phenomenon at the same time.