Ariana Resources plc : Mine Permitting to be Initiated at Red Rabbit Gold Project in Western Turkey

  Ariana Resources plc : Mine Permitting to be Initiated at Red Rabbit Gold
                          Project in Western Turkey

                               28 January 2013
                                   AIM: AAU


Ariana Resources plc  ("Ariana" or  "the Company"), the  gold exploration  and 
development  company  focused  on  Turkey,  is  pleased  to  announce  further 
development progress at the Kiziltepe Sector of the Red Rabbit Gold Project in
Western Turkey, ahead of mine construction targeted in Q4 2013.


  *Decree of the Ministerial Council  in Turkey removes the Kiziltepe  Sector 
    site from an area previously affected by the requirements of the  Ministry 
    of  Culture  and  Tourism,  and  allowing  Ariana  to  proceed  with   the 
    Environmental Impact Assessment ("EIA"). 

  *EIA project summary  documentation will  be submitted to  the Ministry  of 
    Environment and Urban Planning ("MEUP")  shortly. This will initiate  the 
    formal process for the permitting of the mine. 

  *Geotechnical drilling and site  investigation for clay nearing  completion 
    at the Tailings Storage Facility ("TSF") site. Results to date have  been 
    positive and support  the potential for  the designated area  to host  the 
    tailings dam. 

Dr. Kerim Sener, Managing Director, commented:

"Following the approval of our  forestry permits last month, this  Ministerial 
Council Decree has removed another hurdle for us ahead of the construction  of 
our first  mine  during  late  2013.  The  imminent  submission  of  our  EIA 
documentation and initiation  of the mine  permitting process are  significant 
milestones for Ariana as we advance  closer to commercial production from  Red 
Rabbit in 2014.

"Development activities on the ground are also bearing fruit for the  Company, 
with significant progress made  being made by our  technical team on  drilling 
operations at the designated tailings dam site. Initial indications have been
highly encouraging with the site demonstrating itself to be conducive for  the 
location of the  tailings dam,  and we hope  to confirm  this through  further 

"The Company will update shareholders with  a revised project schedule in  due 
course, as we remain focused on our target of commercial production in 2014."

Ministerial Council Decree

On 20 January 2013, the Official  Gazette of the Turkish Republic published  a 
decree by the  Ministerial Council,  which has  brought in  to effect  various 
modifications to areas defined for  touristic purposes across Turkey.  Twelve 
areas are defined in the decree, which in some cases established and in  other 
cases modified the boundaries  of previous regions  for touristic purposes  in 

Prior to this decree, parts of the Kiziltepe Sector lay within the  boundaries 
of the Balikesir-Sindirgi-Hisaralan Thermal Tourism Centre and the Company had
been taking various procedural steps to have our mining area formally  excised 
from this region  via an application  to the Ministry  of Culture and  Tourism 
("MCT"). The Company had already received an official letter of  confirmation 
from the MCT in  May 2012 stating  that the Company  had clearance to  proceed 
with all exploration, development and mining  work within the limits of  three 
operational licences that fell  within the boundaries  of the thermal  tourism 
region. This  was  supported  by earlier  official  communications  from  the 
General Directorate of Mining Affairs, which had granted the licences and  the 
principal mining  permit  prior  to  the  thermal  tourism  area  having  been 

As a result of this decree, the activities of the Company will no longer  have 
any direct impact on  the newly defined thermal  tourism region, although  the 
Company will continue to comply with the various environmental requirements of
the MEUP. Despite the fact that  the mining area now lies completely  outside 
of the designated thermal tourism  region, the Company continues to  recognise 
the importance of this region from a touristic perspective and aims to  ensure 
that its  activities  remain compatible  with  and indeed  supportive  of  the 
touristic potential of the area. 

Initiation of EIA Permitting

Following the decree  referred to above,  the Company, via  its Joint  Venture 
operating subsidiary, Zenit Madencilik  San. ve Tic.  A.S. will be  submitting 
its Project Summary  Document to the  MEUP shortly. This  will follow from  a 
joint review of the report with its environmental consultants, SRK Consulting,
this week.  The  report includes  relevant  extracts from  its  Environmental 
Impact Assessment study and  its submission to the  MEUP is a requirement  for 
formal permitting of  the mine to  commence. The process  of mine  permitting 
will involve public consultation meetings and the receipt by MEUP of  consents 
from several  other ministries  and government  departments. The  process  is 
expected to take five to six months,  at the end of which the Company  expects 
to receive its  EIA positive  certification, which  in turn  would enable  the 
Company to commence construction permitting and development of the mine.  The 
Company will provide a further update  on the project timeline in due  course, 
but based  on these  latest developments,  the Company  remains on  track  for 
construction to commence in Q4 2013. 

Geotechnical Drilling

Following the grant of relevant forestry permits in the designated TSF area in
late 2012,  final geotechnical  drilling work  for the  TSF engineering  study 
commenced in December 2012 and is due to be completed during February 2013. A
total of  eight HQ  holes  of 30m  each, with  packer  tests completed  at  2m 
intervals in each hole  were determined necessary for  the detailed design  of 
the TSF. IMC-S Teknik Sondaj Ltd.  is carrying out the drilling programme  in 
accordance with the technical requirements of the design team. In addition to
the packer tests, which are completed in the field, various lab tests are also
planned such as grain size distribution, bulk density and uniaxial compressive

To date  six  holes of  the  programme have  been  completed and  drilling  is 
currently progressing on the seventh hole. Before construction commences, the
completed holes will be used  as sub-surface water monitoring stations  before 
being filled with concrete. Based on current progress, the full  geotechnical 
site investigation report  for the  TSF area  will be  completed during  March 

Site Investigation for Clay

The  designated  TSF  area  was   investigated  for  its  potential  to   host 
sufficiently impermeable material  to act  as a barrier  substrate within  the 
tailings dam. Several  sites within the  basin of the  TSF were trenched  (17 
trenches) and initial  assessment has been  positive. The material  recovered 
from these sites and, on comparison to drilling results in the top 5m of  each 
hole, shows  that  there  is  sufficient in-situ  clay  material,  which  when 
homogenised and mixed  with certain additives,  could be used  in addition  to 
geomembranes as part  of the impermeable  barrier for lining  of the  tailings 
dam. This  is  a significant  outcome  that could  substantially  reduce  the 
estimated cost of building the tailings dam.


        Ariana Resources plc                Tel: +44 (0) 20 7407 3616
        Michael Spriggs, Chairman
        Kerim Sener, Managing Director
        Beaumont Cornish Limited            Tel: +44 (0) 20 7628 3396
        Roland Cornish / Felicity Geidt
        S.P. Angel Corporate Finance LLP    Tel: +44 (0) 20 3463 2260
        Ewan Leggat / Laura Littley
        St Brides Media & Finance Ltd       Tel: +44 (0) 20 7236 1177
        Susie Geliher / Lottie Brocklehurst

Editors' note:

Dr Kerim  Sener, BSc  (Hons), MSc,  PhD, is  the Managing  Director of  Ariana 
Resources plc. A  graduate of the  University of Southampton  in Geology,  he 
also holds a Master's degree from the Royal School of Mines (Imperial College,
London) in Mineral Exploration and a doctorate from the University of  Western 
Australia. He is a Fellow of The Geological Society of London and has  worked 
in geological research  and mineral  consultancy in  Eastern Europe,  Southern 
Africa and Australia. He  has read and approved  the technical disclosure  in 
this regulatory announcement. 

About Ariana Resources:

Ariana is  an  exploration  and  development  company  focused  on  epithermal 
gold-silver and  porphyry  copper-gold deposits  in  Turkey. The  Company  is 
developing a portfolio of  prospective licences selected on  the basis of  its 
in-house geological and remote-sensing database, on its own in western  Turkey 
and in Joint Venture with  Eldorado Gold Corporation in north-eastern  Turkey. 
Eldorado owns 51% of this joint venture and is fully funding all  exploration 
work on the JV properties, while Ariana owns 49% and is the operator.

The Company's flagship assets are its Sindirgi and Tavsan gold projects  which 
form the Red Rabbit Gold Project. Both contain a series of prospects,  within 
two prolific  mineralised  districts in  the  Western Anatolian  Volcanic  and 
Extensional (WAVE)  Province  in  western Turkey.  This  Province  hosts  the 
largest operating gold mines in Turkey and remains highly prospective for  new 
porphyry and epithermal deposits. These core projects, which are separated by
a distance of 75km, are presently  being assessed as to their economic  merits 
and now form part of a Joint Venture with Proccea Construction Co. The  total 
resource inventory of the Company stands at 448,000 ounces of gold equivalent.

Ariana  also  has   a  strategic  investment   in  Tigris  Resources   Limited 
(, a private  Jersey-based exploration company,  which 
is focused on  the exploration  of copper  and gold  deposits in  southeastern 
Turkey. Ariana retains 12.3% of Tigris Resources Limited. 

S.P. Angel  Corporate Finance  LLP are  brokers to  the Company  and  Beaumont 
Cornish Limited is the Company's Nominated Adviser.

For further  information on  Ariana you  are invited  to visit  the  Company's 
website at



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             Source: Ariana Resources plc via Thomson Reuters ONE
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