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Neotectonics of Turkey - a synthesis

Turkey forms one of the most actively deforming regions in the world and has a long history of devastating earthquakes. The better understanding of its neotectonic features and active tectonics would provide insight, not only for the country but also for the entire Eastern Mediterranean region. Active tectonics of Turkey is the manifestation of collisional intracontinental convergence- and tectonic escape-related deformation since the Early Pliocene (similar to5 Ma). Three major structures govern the neotectonics of Turkey; they are dextral North Anatolian Fault Zone (NAFZ), sinistral East Anatolian Fault Zone (EAFZ) and the Aegean-Cyprean Are. Also, sinistral Dead Sea Fault Zone has an important role. The Anatolian wedge between the NAM, and EAFZ moves westward away from the eastern Anatolia, the collision zone between the Arabian and the Eurasian plates. Ongoing deformation along, and mutual interaction among them has resulted in four distinct neotectonic provinces, namely the East Anatolian contractional, the North Anatolian, the Central Anatolian 'Ova' and the West Anatolian extensional provinces. Each province is characterized by its unique structural elements, and forms an excellent laboratory to study active strike-slip, normal and reverse faulting and the associated basin formation. (C) 2001 Editions scientifiques et medicales Elsevier SAS.