Published On: Sun, Jun 2nd, 2013

‘Why were police so angry?’: Turkish protesters slam police brutality, return to Taksim Square

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Demonstrators clash with police during a protest against Turkey's Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan and his ruling Justice and Development Party on June 1, 2013. (AFP Photo / Adem Altan)

Demonstrators clash with police during a protest against Turkey’s Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan and his ruling Justice and Development Party on June 1, 2013. (AFP Photo / Adem Altan)

Over the weekend, the protest that started as a sit-in to protect a park spread all over the country, with crowds urging PM Erdogan to step down. At least 2 people have reportedly been killed, over 1,000 injured in the violence; hundreds got detained.

Most of the injuries were sustained near Taksim Square in Istanbul, the focal point of the recent protest.

Massive demonstrations from last night are currently continuing in the streets, with the metropolis of Istanbul witnessing cases of vandalism. Rallies kicked off on Friday: authorities decided to cut the trees in Geza Park, and people took to the streets to protest.

“The latest expression of public anger is unprecedented in character. Unlike previous anti-government rallies and demonstrations, people are protesting wherever they are, including banging pots in their homes regardless of the time,” journalist Mahir Zeynalov writes in the Turkish daily Today’s Zaman.

Erdogan commented on the current events stressing that protestors should go home. “If you bring 100,000, I’ll bring out a million,” he threatened. The leader also vowed to rebuild the Ottoman barracks. However, he warned police against using excessive force.

The protest spread to 50 provinces in the last three days. Up to 940 people have been detained across the country as part of “necessary security measures,” Turkish Interior Minister Muammer Güler said.

The capital, Ankara, has been engulfed by the anti-government protests, too, the activists say. And they don’t really understand why the police crackdown is so violent.

“People in Geza Park were just sitting there, and police started firing at their tents, which were in the park, so we don’t really understand why they used such force and why they are so angry,” activist Seda Guner indicated to RT.

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Source: Russia Today

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