Turkish world record holder to dive in Antarctica

An internationally renowned Turkish diver will join a Turkish research team on a journey to Antarctica, the frozen continent.

Şahika Ercümen will join the team which will look into the establishment of Turkey's scientific bases in Antarctica.

The team is being supported by the Turkish president, Ministry of Industry and Technology and Istanbul Technical University Polar Research Center.

In a statement, Ercümen said that she will reach the pole in 30 days on a ship which will not have access to mobile phones or the internet.

The journey is set to start end of January.

Ercümen said that she will dive with whales, penguins and seals who have never had any human contact.

Her journey will be filmed in a documentary.

Ercümen said that she is proud to be representing her country.

She broke a world freediving record in the variable weight without fins discipline in 2016 off the coast of the Mediterranean resort town of Kas.

Antarctica has served as a scientific research zone since a 1959 treaty. Turkey is a signatory of the treaty.

Antarctica is the coldest continent on earth. The lowest temperature there was recorded in 1983 at -89 degrees Celsius (-128 Fahrenheit).

Turkey's first Istanbul Technical University Polar Research Center was founded in Antarctica in 2015.

The mission of the center is to carry out research on Antarctica and raise Turkey's profile in the international scientific community.

In April 2016, the first ever Turkish team of researchers -- 14 medics, botanists, geologists and oceanographers from seven universities -- travelled to Antarctica to study the impact of climate change.

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