End Times and Current Events

General Category => Current Events => Topic started by: Mark on June 01, 2013, 02:06:33 pm

Title: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 01, 2013, 02:06:33 pm
Turkey anti-government protestsClear topicViolence flared in Turkey on June 1, 2013, as thousands of protesters clashed with police for a second day in Istanbul and Ankara. The protests were triggered by government plans to build Ottoman-ear barracks which would house shops and apartments in Istanbul's Taksim Square, which has historically been a venue for political protest. The protests have since evolved into a wider cry of defiance against Turkish PM Erdogan's policies. Police fired teargas and water cannons at protesters, injuring hundreds. - Reuters

Police crackdown triggers anti-government riots

This appears to be growing in Turkey, could it be the start of a new one?

 After battling for nearly 36 hours with tear gas, water cannons and pepper spray, Turkish police retreated from Istanbul's central Taksim Square on Saturday afternoon, allowing tens of thousands of demonstrators to pour into the space.

A peaceful sit-in on Friday against government plans to demolish a park was met with a police crackdown, igniting the biggest anti-government riots this city has seen in a decade.
The clashes subsided Saturday afternoon, when police allowed protesters to flow into the square. The protesters pelted police vehicles with stones as they withdrew from the area.

The protests also spread to several other cities, including the capital Ankara and the port city of Izmir.

At least 14 people were injured in the clashes in Istanbul, including one who suffered brain trauma, the Istanbul governor's office said.

Earlier Saturday crowds gathered across central Istanbul and chanted "government resign" and "shoulder to shoulder against fascism" as phalanxes of helmeted riot police responded with volleys of tear gas canisters.

For 24 hours, a toxic fog of tear gas and pepper spray hung in the air over Istanbul's central Taksim square.

This major transport hub and commercial district has become the main battleground between angry protesters who hurled stones and bottles at riot police.
On Saturday, Turkey's fiery prime minister broke his silence about the protests, vowing not to back down to the demonstrators.

"The police where there yesterday, they are there today, and they will be there tomorrow. Taksim Square cannot be allowed to be a place where marginal groups can freely roam," Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a speech transmitted live on Turkish television channels.

But Erdogan also conceded that Turkish security forces had made excessive use of tear gas against demonstrators.

"There have been errors in the actions of the security forces, especially with regard to use of pepper gas. Right now that is being investigated, researched. There is an error there, sure. When it is used excessively we are against it as well. And in fact there was such excess," Erdogan said.

In some Istanbul neighborhoods, residents banged pots and pans in protest on the street during the prime minister's speech.

Erdogan's chief adviser, Ibrahim Kalin, said police have been ordered to be judicious in how they confront the demonstrators.

Addressing the original complaint, Kalin said that Istanbul's mayor said he is considering a number of projects at the park, and not necessarily a shopping mall. But the scope of the protests show there is a bigger issue about freedom of speech versus accusations of authoritative government.

"People are entitled to disagreement with the government, they can exercise their democratic rights, but they can do so within the context of a democratic society," Kalin said.
International human rights groups Amnesty International and Greenpeace have denounced what they describe as excessive use of police force against peaceful protesters.

On Friday, city government officials said at least 12 people had been wounded in the clashes, and at least 63 people detained. Opposition lawmaker Sirri Surreya Onder was hospitalized after being struck in the back with a tear gas canister.

"The prime minister has been overlooking and belittling the will of the people. He has been acting like a small sultan," said Sebahat Tuncel, another parliament member from Onder's Peace and Democracy Party.

Lost amid the explosion of anger in the streets of Istanbul was the original source of the protests.

Earlier this week, several dozen activists tried to stage a sit-in in Gezi Park, the last bit of green space left in Taksim Square.

The demonstrators were protesting government plans to level the park and replace it with a reconstruction of century-old Ottoman military barracks, to have been updated with a shopping mall and a mosque.

On Wednesday, Erdogan responded to the small park protest, vowing to go ahead with the planned project.

"They can do whatever they want. We've made our decision, and we will do as we have decided," Erdogan said, according to the semi-official Anadolu news agency.

For three straight days, police periodically raided the park protest, dousing unarmed demonstrators with pepper spray and tear gas. The sit-in continued to grow and win support from Turkish celebrities and lawmakers from both the main secular and pro-Kurdish opposition political parties.

On Friday morning, riot police stormed the growing camp in Gezi Park with water cannons and more tear gas, pushing protesters out into surrounding streets, and triggering the clashes that have continued for more than 24 hours.

In his televised statement on Saturday, Erdogan remained defiant on his plans for the park, saying "we are going to build the Topcu barracks, it is not a project that came out of nowhere."

But many demonstrators said they were no longer protesting about the park.

The demonstrations were now against the increasingly authoritarian policies of Erdogan, the most powerful, popular and polarizing leader Turkey has seen in generations.

Turkey has enjoyed an unprecedented decade of economic growth, since Erdogan's Justice and Development Party first swept to power after winning elections in 2002 on a campaign to institute pro-democratic reforms.

But in recent years, the Turkish government has come under fire from media watchdog groups for its prolonged detention of more journalists than any other country in the world. Turkish security forces have also made such frequent use of tear gas against opposition protesters that some critics have started referring to the prime minister as "Chemical Tayyip."

"The reason for massive protest in Turkey is in fact trivial. (A construction in a park.) But this shows the cumulative reaction to Erdogan," wrote Mustafa Akyol, a Turkish newspaper columnist and outspoken champion of "liberal Islam."

"Erdogan needs to see that the country needs more 'participatory democracy.' People want to influence decisions in public matters...it is ultimately none other than Erdogan who cultivated this anger and who needs to calm it down.

"Erdogan probably did not know thousands of people who voted for him were among those raising their voices as well," columnist Sule Kulu wrote Saturday in the English-language newspaper Today's Zaman.

"If he does not return to his pro-democracy stance, this would prepare his fall in Turkish politics. İstanbul, his place of birth in politics, can bring him his political death."


Title: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 01, 2013, 02:08:57 pm
Syria criticizes Erdogan: Detached, wild
Deep rift between Turkey, Assad regime, reaches streets of Istanbul. Syrian Information minister attacks Turkish response to mass protests, various media criticize US

Damascus is taking advantage of the opportunity to attack Turkey. Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zohbi had things to say Saturday about Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's methods of responding to mass protests in his country.
"The oppression of Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan against nonviolent demonstrations is something that is unrealistic and reveals that he is detached from reality," al-Zohbi said. "The Turkish people, our brothers, do not deserve this wildness and there is no justification for Erdogan to challenge his people."

Since the beginning of the Syrian crisis, a deep rift has grown between the two countries. Estimates regarding the extent of the killings – about 80,000 people thus far – has served to exacerbate the tone and turned political criticism into a chasm that has brought the two country’s armies to the edge of conflict.
Now, the Syrian regime and media are taking advantage of happenings in Turkey – a local environmental protest which developed into a chain of mass demonstrations against the government – to attack Erdogan and divert the international spotlight a bit from what is happening in Syria.

The official Syrian news agency SANA described in detail the events in Istanbul under the headline, "Continued mass protests against the authoritarian Erdogan government." According to the Assad-associated news agency, "The protests reflect the growing dissatisfaction of the public with the ways of the Erdogan government and are an expression of opposition to its policies in relation to the crisis in Syria."
Erdogan also received criticism in the article which stated that he “continues with his plans despite widespread popular protests." The article also made its statement on the US State Department, which it said was, “merely expressing concern for a number of wounded."

Hezbollah, a Lebanese ally of Assad, also highlighted the events in Turkey. "Protests against the government of Erdogan growing and Turkish President is concerned," said the Shiite group's Al-Manar TV network, which broadcast photos of wounded from the events.

The Almayadeen Lebanese channel, also associated with Hezbollah, noted, "These are the most violent protests in Turkey in a decade," adding sarcastically that the United States reminded its ally that it needed to respect individual freedoms.
The protest in Taksim Square began on Monday, after a number of trees were uprooted by authorities to make way for the establishment of a commercial center as written in the local development plan. The local protests gathered momentum and became a mass uprising against the policy of Erdogan and his party, the Islamist "Justice and Development Party."
On Friday, violence erupted at dawn, when the police force raided a camp protesters had set up in the square and slept in for several days. The protesters said that the protest "is not about the cutting down of trees anymore,” but against the Turkish prime minister and against his party.

The protest expanded from Istanbul to other cities, including Ankara. For now, tens of thousands of people are participating in protests throughout Turkey, and a pair of the longest bridges in the Bosporus Strait, normally connecting the two parts of Istanbul, close periodically due to the events. Some streets at the center of the conflict have been closed as well.
About 1,000 people were injured in the riots, including one who was injured in the head, and several individuals who lost their eyes. The events led Erdogan to admit that "mistakes were made" and that police used excessive force. President Abdullah Gul called on police to "act proportionately."


Title: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 01, 2013, 03:34:35 pm
Taksim sq full with protesters demanding Erdogan to go #Occupygezi http://t.co/100JJqZpoj

More and more people headed to #Taksim Square from every direction they can. #occupygezi pic.twitter.com/NEeUlf5qmQ

Turkish interior ministry to take action against police officers who used tear gas abusively, according to statement - @HDNER

Istanbul protesters declare 'victory' after police pull out of Taksim Square - @AFP

Amnesty International calls for action in Turkey as reports of alleged police brutality continue - @AJELive

Turkish interior minister says 939 arrests made in more than 90 demonstrations across Turkey - @Reuters

Report: Protesters in Istanbul have made their way toward the PM's office and are only about 200 meters away - @AJELive


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 01, 2013, 03:42:25 pm
Clashes flare; Erdogan wants protests to end immediately

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan called for an immediate end yesterday to the fiercest anti-government demonstrations for years, as thousands of protesters clashed with riot police in Istanbul and Ankara for a second day.

The unrest was triggered by government plans for a replica Ottoman-era barracks housing shops or apartments in Istanbul’s Taksim Square, long a venue for political protest, but has widened into a broader show of defiance against Erdogan and his Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Police fired teargas and water cannon down a major shopping street as crowds of protesters chanting “unite against fascism” and “government resign” marched toward Taksim, where hundreds were injured in clashes on Friday.

A police helicopter buzzed overhead as groups of mostly young men and women, bandanas or surgical masks tied around their mouths, used Facebook and Twitter on mobile phones to try to organize and regroup in side streets.

Waiters scurried out of luxury hotels lining the square, on what should be a busy weekend for tourists in one of the world’s most visited cities, ferrying lemons to protesters, who squirted the juice in their eyes to mitigate the effects of tear gas.

“People from different backgrounds are coming together. This has become a protest against the government, against Erdogan taking decisions like a king,” said Oral Goktas, a 31-year old architect among a peaceful crowd walking toward Taksim.

Stone-throwing protesters also clashed with police firing tear gas in the Kizilay district of central Ankara as a helicopter hovered overhead. Further protests were planned in other centers including the Aegean coastal city of Izmir.

The demonstration at Taksim’s Gezi Park started late on Monday after trees were torn up to make way for the redevelopment. Erdogan vowed to push ahead with the plans and said the issue was being used as an excuse to stoke tensions.

“Every four years we hold elections and this nation makes its choice,” he said in a speech broadcast on television.

“Those who have a problem with government’s policies can express their opinions within the framework of law and democracy ... I am asking the protesters to immediately end these actions,” he said.

The opposition accused him of behaving like a dictator.

“Tens of thousands are saying no, they are opposing the dictator ... The fact that you are the ruling party doesn’t mean you can do whatever you want,” said Kemal Kilicdaroglu, leader of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP).

Residents hung out of windows and balconies banging pots and pans in support of the protesters in the streets below late into the night in several districts of Istanbul on Friday. Medics said close to 1,000 people had been injured in the clashes in Istanbul alone. Half a dozen lost eyes after being hit by gas canisters, the Turkish Doctors’ Association said.
“I see benefit in telling people about the project ... instead of spraying pepper gas at them,” Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc said of the Taksim plans, in an apparent acknowledgement of the heavy-handedness of the police crackdown.

The US State Department said it was concerned by the number of injuries while Amnesty International and the European parliament raised concern about excessive use of police force.
Erdogan acknowledged mistakes had been made in the use of tear gas and said the government was investigating, but said the police reserved the right to use reasonable force.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 01, 2013, 03:48:34 pm
Police step up attacks on protesters in Turkey Eds: Updates with Erdogan quote, Gul statement; epa photos

By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online 
Istanbul (dpa) - Turkey‘s violent crackdown on protests in Istanbul raised international concern, after opponents of the government were met Saturday with tanks, tear gas and water cannon for a second day.

Tens of thousands of protesters thronged the city‘s 1.6-kilometre Bosphorus Bridge and made their way toward Taksim Square but were held back by security forces.

The protesters, who accuse Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Justice and Development Party (AKP) of gradually instituting authoritarian Islamist rule in fiercely secular Turkey, called on him to step down.

"The severity with which the police have responded is completely inappropriate and will lead to an expansion of the protests," European Parliament President Martin Schulz warned.

His remarks echoed concerns voiced by the office of European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, as well as the United States and local human rights groups.

A number of people have been injured as police have tried to disperse protesters since Friday, demonstrators told dpa.

"Turkey‘s long-term stability, security and prosperity is best guaranteed by upholding the fundamental freedoms of expression, assembly and association, which is what it seems these individuals were doing," US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.

Police surrounded the Besiktas ferry landing in an attempt to arrest potential protesters from the other side of the Bosporus, according to social media accounts.

Images posted to Facebook appeared to show a group of police officers beating an unarmed protester and a man with severe lacerations on his back.

While initial reports suggested security forces had withdrawn from Taksim Square, protesters said police had resumed firing water cannon and dropped pepper spray from helicopters by Saturday afternoon.

There were reports of electricity and internet services being shut down around the city. Mobile phones were unable to transmit data. Hotels and businesses in central Istanbul supplied demonstrators with food, water and wireless Internet connections.

In a televised speech Saturday, a defiant Erdogan said police would bring the Taksim Square protests to an end. He conceded that the use of pepper spray may have been excessive and called for an investigation.

"The use of pepper spray by security forces was a mistake," Erdogan said.

Turkish media later quoted the Interior Ministry saying those responsible for the disproportionate response would be prosecuted.

President Abdullah Gul called for calm and urged the two sides to enter into dialogue.

The protests began Friday when police forcibly removed several hundred environmentalists who had gathered to stop a construction project on the edge of the square.

Tens of thousands of angry citizens marched around Taksim Square late into the night, while police used water cannon and tear gas.

The protests later spread to several other Turkish cities.

The controversial project involves the reconstruction of an Ottoman-era military barracks housing a shopping mall at Gezi Park, the city‘s smallest urban park.

An Istanbul court had already ordered the project be stopped.

Erdogan is keen to stress Turkey‘s Ottoman period, when it claimed leadership of the Islamic world through the caliphate, abolished by reformist leader Kemal Ataturk in 1924.

The largest opposition party, the Republican People‘s Party (CHP) has called on the government to de-escalate the situation. Turkish media quoted CHP chairman Kemal Kilicdaroglu calling for police to be removed from Taksim Square.

He demanded Erdogan freeze the Gezi Park project. dpa cn abc fi ncs sgb bve fff Author: Carsten Hoffmann


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 02, 2013, 06:43:53 am
Turkish protesters celebrate in Istanbul’s Taksim Square
DEBKAfile June 2, 2013, 12:35 PM (GMT+02:00)

Sunday morning saw Turkish protesters singing and dancing after forcing police to leave the Istanbul square in their 48 hour protest which spread to  nearly 40 Turkish cities including the capital, Ankara. Their demonstration against converting the Taksim Park into a shopping mall escalated into a nationwide rally against Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s authoritarian ways. Erdogan while vowing the Taskim project would go forward criticized the police for using excessive quantities of tear gas which injured hundreds and left some protesters blinded. Amnesty reported two deaths while the US and Britain condemned Turkish police violence.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 02, 2013, 07:41:05 am
Main opposition leader calls on Turkish PM to apologize people

The main opposition leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu today called on the prime minister to apologize to people for the excessive use of force against demonstrators who protested against the demolition of Taksim Gezi Park, to be replaced with a shopping mall.

“One cannot rule against the people. People are the strongest force. [Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan] must apologize to the people. I am waiting for that but I don’t know if he will show this merit,” Kılıçdaroğluı told reporters today.

The main opposition leader also said that his visit to the demonstrations was not an opportunist attempt. “I went there as a civilian citizen, to support the demonstrators. This demonstration is not [Republican People’s Party] CHP’s. It is the people’s protest. We didn’t take our party flags,” said Kılıçdaroğlu.

Meanwhile, Kılıçdaroğlu also condemned any violent action against members of the media. He said that he also believed that the media did had not produced good coverage of the protests, adding that it was not media members but the media bosses who were to blame.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 02, 2013, 07:42:18 am
Protesters return to Turkey's Taksim Square
Istanbul's iconic square is again being occupied by anti-government demonstrators following two days of clashes.

Thousands of Turkish protesters have returned to Istanbul's Taksim Square a day after police pulled out from the area in the wake of violent anti-government demonstrations.

The square, the focus of the demonstrations, was calm on Sunday morning, but protesters began reoccupying the site in the afternoon. They said their fight against the policies of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government is far from over.

Earlier, residents helped with cleaning up some of the debris left by Saturday's battles. Al Jazeera's correspondent Rawya Rageh said there were burned buses, cars and other debris around the square, with graffiti sprayed across many walls and vehicles.

Riot police pulled back from the square after fierce battles with protesters.

The protests in Istanbul were mirrored in dozens of other cities, with many carrying on late into Saturday night and Sunday morning. In Ankara, the capital, smashed shop windows were evidence of the previous evening's violence.

Muammer Guler, the interior minister, said police had detained 939 protesters in more than 90 demonstrations across the country. Some have since been released.

He said 53 civilians and 26 police were injured. One of the injured civilians was in intensive care unit at an Istanbul hospital.

Widening protest

The Istanbul protest began last Monday as a peaceful sit-in at Gezi Park across Taksim Square. The demonstrators had been preventing workers from razing some of the 600 trees in the park, the last patch of green in the commercial area, to make way for the restoration of Ottoman-era military barracks.

Residents fear that the barracks will be turned into a shopping centre.

The demonstration soon took a violent turn, with police shooting tear gas at the protesters. The protests then escalated into widespread anger against what critics say is the government's increasingly conservative and authoritarian agenda.

They cite the restrictions on alcohol sales and warnings against public displays of affection.

Erdogan admitted on Saturday there may have been some cases of "extreme" police action.

"It is true that there have been some mistakes, extremism in police response," he said.

However, he remained defiant, pledging to push forward with the plans to redevelop Taksim Square.

Erdogan said the redevelopment of Gezi Park was being used as an excuse for the unrest and warned the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), which had been given permission to hold a rally in Istanbul, against stirring tensions.

Both the UK and US called on Turkey's government to exercise restraint.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 02, 2013, 11:54:13 am
More than 1,700 arrested in Turkey protests; most of arrested released, minister says - @AFP


Growing protest outside state tv #Turkey pic.twitter.com/PwvcfkEYXX


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 02, 2013, 01:33:40 pm
Erdogan rejects 'dictator' claims

Turkey's prime minister on Sunday rejected claims that he is a "dictator," dismissing protesters as an extremist fringe even as thousands returned to the landmark Istanbul square that has become the site of the fiercest anti-government outburst in years.

Over the past three days, protesters around the country have unleashed pent-up resentment against Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who after 10 years in office many Turks see as an uncompromising figure with undue influence in every part of life.

A huge, exuberant protest in Taksim Square subsided overnight, but an estimated 10,000 people again streamed into the area on Sunday, many waving flags, chanting "victory, victory, victory" and calling on Erdogan's government to resign.

Some protesters have compared Erdogan to a sultan and denounced him as a dictator. Scrambling to show he was unbowed and appealing to a large base of conservative Turks who support him, Erdogan delivered two speeches on Sunday and appeared in a television interview.

With Turkish media otherwise giving scant reports about the protests, many turned to social media outlets for information on the unrest.

"There is now a menace which is called Twitter," Erdogan said. "The best examples of lies can be found there. To me, social media is the worst menace to society."

Under Erdogan's leadership, Turkey has boosted economic growth and raised its international profile. But he has been a divisive figure at home, with his government recently passing legislation curbing the sale of alcohol and taking a strong stand against the Syrian regime that some believe has put security at risk.

The demonstrations were ignited by a violent police crackdown on a peaceful sit-in to prevent the uprooting of trees at Taksim Square and have since spread around the country.

More skirmishes broke out in the capital, Ankara, on Sunday, with police unleashing tear gas at several thousand protesters who tried to march toward Erdogan's office from the city's main square.

A group of youths formed a barricade and hurled fire bombs or threw back gas canisters at police. An Associated Press reporter saw at least eight injured people being carried away, and police appeared to directly target journalists with tear gas.

In Taksim, dozens of people climbed on the roof of a cultural center that Erdogan says will be demolished and turned into an opera hall. A banner reading "Don't yield" was hung from the building.

"If they call someone who has served the people a 'dictator,' I have nothing to say," Erdogan said in an address to a group representing migrants from the Balkans. "My only concern has been to serve my country."

In another speech delivered an hour later, Erdogan said: "I am not the master of the people. Dictatorship does not run in my blood or in my character. I am the servant of the people."

Police and protesters also clashed violently on Friday and Saturday, leaving hundreds injured. Clouds of tear gas overwhelmed Istanbul's normally touristy city center.

Interior Minister Muammer Guler said some 1,750 people had been detained since May 28, but most had since been released.

Erdogan called the protests "ideological" and manipulated by an opposition "unable to beat (the government) at the ballot box."

He said 89 police vehicles, 42 private cars, four buses and 94 businesses were destroyed by the "vandalism" of the past two days.

Alluding to his party's strong base, Erdogan said he had the power to summon much larger numbers of his supporters at rallies.

"Our supporters are calling and saying 'are we going to stay silent?' but I am urging calm," he said in an interview with Haberturk television.

Erdogan reiterated that his government would not back away from plans to uproot trees at Taksim as part of his urban renovation plans for the area. In a statement that could cause more controversy, he also declared that a mosque would be built at Taksim.

The mosque plans have long been contentious because it would further shrink the green spaces in Istanbul's city center. Some argue that there are already plenty of mosques around Taksim.

"I am not going to seek the permission of the (the opposition) or a handful of looters," Erdogan said.

Erdogan also defended his government's environmental record, saying it had planted two billion trees and built 160 parks since coming to office in 2002.

In Berlin meanwhile, about 500 people staged a peaceful solidarity protest outside the Turkish Embassy.

"The people are finally standing up, speaking up and fighting for their rights," said Hakan Tas, a deputy for the Left Party in Berlin's local assembly, who took part in the protest.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 02, 2013, 02:10:00 pm
Turkish police clamp down on anti-government protests: LIVE UPDATES

Turkish police have fired tear gas and water cannon to disperse a massive demonstration against the demolition of a park in central Istanbul. The rally grew into a wider anti-government protest and is spreading across the country.

Mahir Zeynalov @MahirZeynalov

Hundreds from Taksim are heading to Besiktas, where police and protesters clash.
2:37 после полудня - 2 июня 2013

18:38 GMT: Police are firing tear gas to disperse protesters outside Turkish PM Erdogan's office in Istanbul, AFP reports.

live updates: http://rt.com/news/istanbul-park-protests-police-095/

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 02, 2013, 02:35:53 pm
19:20 GMT: Anonymous claims to have taken down several websites across Turkey, targeting municipal governments in Mersin and Izmir as well the Gebze Institute of Technology.

Anonymous @YourAnonNews

"An itibari ile..  DOWN:
DOWN http://www.mersin.gov.tr/
DOWN http://www.eshot.gov.tr/
DOWN http://resmigazete.gov.tr/  " via @boxerescape

19:38 GMT: Decrying the reaction of Turkish authorities to the ongoing protests as those of a “petty dictator,” Anonymous vows to kick off a worldwide action which will “bring the Turkish government to its knees.” With #opTurkey, the hacktivist collective plans to “attack every Internet and communications asset of the Turkish government.”


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 03, 2013, 05:54:41 am
Turkey anti-government protests

More: Turkey's Erdogan defends foreign trip during protests, says trips are planned months in advance - @RawyaRageh


Protesters in Turkey gather outside NTV media building to protest coverage - @WashingtonPoint, @140Journos

Turkey clashes: Erdogan says protests 'are not Turkish Spring'
i wouldnt be so sure of that...
PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan says four days of anti-government protests do not constitute a Turkish Spring. At a news conference before a trip to Morocco, he said the protests were organised by extremists and accused the opposition of provoking "his citizens".


UPDATE 2-Turkish markets tumble as protests unsettle investors

Erdogan maintains hard stance on protests

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 03, 2013, 01:47:18 pm
Turkey anti-government protests

Thousands of protestors flood Istanbul's Taksim Square - @AlArabiya_Eng http://t.co/i6iQ3uZcs7

 1 hour agofrom twitter.com/AlArabiya_Eng by

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 03, 2013, 02:00:21 pm
Administration voices concern over Turkish unrest

WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration voiced concern Monday over Turkey's crackdown on protesters and urged authorities to exercise restraint and all sides to refrain from violence.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 03, 2013, 02:24:14 pm
Protests 'no Turkish Spring', says PM Erdogan

PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan says four days of anti-government protests do not constitute a Turkish Spring.

At a news conference before a trip to Morocco, he said the protests were organised by extremists and accused the opposition of provoking "his citizens".

The protests initially targeted plans to build on a treasured Istanbul park but have spread into nationwide unrest.

The first death in the unrest has been reported, with doctors saying a man was killed after being hit by a taxi.

The demonstrator, 20-year-old Mehmet Ayvalitas, died after the car ignored warnings to stop and ploughed into a crowd of protestors on Sunday in the Mayis district of Istanbul, said the Turkish Doctors' Union.

On Monday evening, thousands of demonstrators again gathered in Taksim Square, the focus of the recent protests.

Many shouted "Tayyip, resign!" while waving red flags and banners and blowing whistles, according to the AFP news agency.

Police also fired tear gas to disperse protesters near Mr Erdogan's office in Istanbul for the fourth consecutive night, AFP reported.

In another development, a public sector trade union confederation, Kesk, says it will begin a two-day strike starting on Tuesday in support.

The left-wing confederation accused the government of being anti-democratic and carrying out "state terror".

Shares in Turkey fell sharply as fears that the protests could continue took hold, with the main share index falling by 10.47%. The cost of insuring Turkish debt rose to a two-month high.

In a sign of continuing concern in Washington, Secretary of State John Kerry spoke of "excessive use of force" by the police.

"We obviously hope that there will be a full investigation of those incidents and full restraint from the police force," he said.

After more overnight violence in Istanbul, protesters clashed with police on Monday in the capital, Ankara.

Tear gas and water cannon were fired at hundreds of demonstrators in the city as around 1,000 protesters converged on central Kizilay Square.

Mr Erdogan said during a televised news conference: "There are those attending these events organised by extremists. This is not about Gezi Park anymore. These are organised events with affiliations both within Turkey and abroad.

"The main opposition party CHP has provoked my innocent citizens. Those who make news [and] call these events the Turkish Spring do not know Turkey."

Meanwhile, Turkish President Abdullah Gul urged calm and defended protesters' rights to hold peaceful demonstrations.

"If there are different opinions, different situations, different points of view and dissent, there is nothing more natural that being able to voice those differences," he was quoted as saying by the Anatolia news agency.

"The messages delivered with good intentions have been received."

Protesters say the Turkish government is becoming increasingly authoritarian.

They fear Mr Erdogan's Justice and Development Party (AKP) is trying to impose conservative Islamic values on the officially secular country and infringe on their personal freedoms, correspondents say.

Officials say more than 1,700 people have been arrested in demonstrations in 67 towns and cities, though many have since been released.

Makeshift hospitals

Overnight, protesters in the Besiktas district of Istanbul tore up paving stones to build barricades, and police responded with tear gas and water cannon.

Mosques, shops and a university in Besiktas were turned into makeshift hospitals for those injured in Sunday night's demonstration.

Several thousand people took part in the protest outside the recently decommissioned Besiktas football stadium.

Unrest was also reported in the western coastal city of Izmir, Adana in the south and Gaziantep in the south-east.

Last week, the government passed legislation curbing the sale and advertising of alcoholic drinks.

The protests began on a small scale last week over redevelopment plans for the park to make way for the rebuilding of an Ottoman-era barracks, reportedly to house a shopping centre.

The demonstrators say the park is one of the few green spaces in Istanbul, and object to the loss of public space for commercial purposes


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 03, 2013, 04:35:26 pm
Turkish PM Erdogan sees himself leading 'Turkish Spring'

it doesnt look that way bub

If there is a "Turkish Spring" to rival the pro-democracy uprisings that swept the Middle East, Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan believes that he, and not protesters in Istanbul, is leading it.
Erdogan has used his blustering, assertive style and a common touch that courts the conservative Islamic heartland to dominate Turkish politics like no leader since Mustafa Kemal Ataturk founded the modern secular republic in 1923.

But four days of the fiercest anti-government protests for years have shocked even Erdogan loyalists, and raised questions over whether an authoritarian personal style now threatens democratic reforms from the early days of his decade in power. Opposition that has had little voice in an Erdogan-dominated parliament appears to be spilling now onto the streets.

Erdogan is the son of a poor sea captain hardened by a childhood in Istanbul's rough Kasimpasa district. A pious youth with soccer-playing ambitions, he was known wryly to allies as 'Imam Beckenbauer' - an allusion to German soccer star Franz Beckenbauer.

He talks bluntly, dismissing the protesters as "looters", and leaving confidently on Monday for a visit to North Africa.

The gatherings of demonstrators on Istanbul's Taksim Square have drawn loose comparisons with protests on Cairo's Tahrir Square that toppled Hosni Mubarak; but no, said Erdogan.

"Those in the foreign media who talk about a 'Turkish Spring', we are already going through a 'Turkish Spring', we have been living in it," he told reporters. "Those who want to turn it into winter will not succeed."

The reference was more than mere rhetoric.


Erdogan sees his crowning achievement as taming anti-democratic forces that had long held Turkey back, in particular a staunchly secular army that intervened to topple governments four times in the second half of the 20th Century.

He has rooted out a "deep state" of hardline secularists ensconced in the security services, judiciary and civil service and resisting democratic reform.

Hundreds of military officers have been jailed on charges of plotting against Erdogan, while others including academics, journalists and politicians face trial on similar accusations.

Erdogan has shown political courage not only in confronting the generals but in seeking a peace deal with Kurdish rebels unthinkable before he was elected in 2002.

Opponents, however, see in his actions a ploy to stifle opposition and subvert the secular order, an accusation he denies.

They accuse him of infiltrating his own "deep state" of Islamist activists into key areas of the state bureaucracy and bridle over his campaign against alcohol sales and his opening of state institutions to the symbol of female Islamic piety, the heascarf so disdained by Ataturk.

With a tight grip on the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) he co-founded with President Abdullah Gul, Erdogan is not a leader who is used to being challenged, particularly in such a public and personal way, on the streets.

"If they call a person who is a servant of the nation a dictator, I can find nothing to tell them," he said on Sunday during the height of the unrest, with thinly concealed contempt. "I have no concern but to serve my 76 million citizens."

The four days of violence, in which riot police backed by armoured vehicles and helicopters fired tear gas and water cannon in Istanbul and Ankara, was triggered by government plans for a replica Ottoman-era barracks in Taksim Square, a characteristically grandiose project.

But it has widened into a broader show of defiance against Erdogan and the AKP, the party he created from an amalgamation of conservative religious forces, nationalists and centre-right elements. The opposition says only the prime minister himself can bring it to an end.

"The prime minister has to come out and apologise to the public," said Kemal Kilicdaroglu, leader of the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP).

The tragedy of the opposition is that it has as yet no credible leader to offer in Erdogan's place.


Erdogan's AKP, the socially conservative successor to a banned Islamist party, has won three straight elections, each time with a higher share of the vote, and taken Turkey from crisis to Europe's fastest growing economy over the past decade.

That record has helped blunt misgivings over Erdogan's intolerance of dissent, both among the party faithful and Western allies, keen to see Turkey as a stable and successful Muslim democracy in a turbulent Middle East.

"A strong, stable Turkey is essential right now for the region. It is the key player. We hope this domestic issue is settled quickly," said one regional diplomat.

Such a narrative has for years kept the international spotlight off Erdogan's authoritarian tendencies, allowing him to govern by force of personality, cementing a pro-government majority which leaves him with little need to seek consensus.

He is a fighter on the political field as he was on the soccer pitch.

"If this is about holding meetings, if this is a social movement, where they gather 20, I will get up and gather 200,000 people. Where they gather 100,000, I will bring together one million," he said of the protests.

Such fiery rhetoric does little to suggest he might have been chastened by events. He is a man tempered by having served time in prison himself in the 1990s for publicly reciting a poem deemed to promote political Islam.

"I think what we've seen is more of the traditional Erdogan," said Sinan Ulgen, chairman of the Istanbul Center for Economics and Foreign Policy Studies, EDAM.

"The reason he remains defiant despite having every reason to appease the situation is that this policy of polarization, of eliminating the middle ground, has served him well in the past and he believes it will continue to do so."

It also sets him at odds with President Gul, who has taken a more conciliatory tone.

In Kasimpasa, the working-class neighbourhood where Erdogan studied the Koran and played football as a boy, he still enjoys a strong following; but even loyal supporters acknowledge their patience with his authoritarian style is wearing thin.

"The demonstrators have sown the seeds of discontent. They've planted the seeds of Libya, Iraq, Syria and Egypt," said a school bus driver who gave his name as Habip.

"The prime minister had an opportunity to calms things down. He should have been conciliatory, but no. He handed politics to the hands of 14- and 15-year olds. His divisive speech grinds and sharpens the knife dividing our society."


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 04, 2013, 09:20:52 am
Turkey's reaction to protests follows Islamist playbook

The Turkish president's dismissal of anti-government protests as the work of opposition thugs fits a pattern of how many Islamist political leaders are responding to legitimate criticism of their regimes.

Islamist leaders in Egypt, Tunisia and Turkey have shown an arrogance toward opposition views, breeding frustration that exacerbates civil unrest and instability and is likely to spread as democratic reforms continue to sweep the region, analysts say.

 "The similarity is quite striking, (but) not that surprising," because Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other Islamist leaders "have a similar view of democracy," says Shadi Hamid, director of research at the Brookings Doha Center.

They believe winning elections gives them a mandate and considerable latitude to pursue their vision, even in the face of significant opposition, Hamid says. "There's less of an idea of consensus building or taking into account the positions of the electoral minorities."

The democratic changes that followed the Arab Spring revolts have led to the political rise of Islamist groups sidelined or repressed by Middle East political structures for decades. In Turkey, Erdogan's Islamist government has gained power in part by eroding the once powerful influence the nation's military had on politics.

While the Islamists have taken advantage of democratic elections, they appear not to have embraced another feature of Western democracy: protecting minorities from the majority.

Protests that erupted last week in Turkey started out as a peaceful demonstration against a government plan to build a mosque and shopping center in an historic Istanbul square surrounded by outdoor restaurants and bars. When police tried to break it up with force, however, the protest evolved into a mass movement against what many Turks describe as an increasingly authoritarian government that's pushing a religious agenda and ignores minority views.

Demonstrators who took up the cause in dozens of Turkish cities protested a recently passed law banning retail alcohol sales between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. and the issuing of new licenses for bars within 100 yards of a mosque or school.

What happened next was similar to how Islamist governments responded to secular opposition in Egypt and Tunisia.

• Erdogan on Monday refused to back away from the development plan and said "I am not going to seek the permission of (the opposition) or a handful of looters." In a speech over the weekend, he warned demonstrators that if they bring 200,000 to the streets, his supporters would bring 1 million.

• Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi declared unchecked executive authority and used his powers to push through a constitution drafted by an Islamist-dominated committee. When tens of thousands of people protested outside his presidential palace, he described them as illegitimate thugs, and declared that "God's will and elections made me the captain of this ship." Thousands of his supporters filled the streets to offset opposition protests.

• In Tunisia, civil unrest erupted after secular opposition leader Chokri Belaid was assassinated. When Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali proposed a unity government to quell the unrest, Islamists blocked it, saying it would be wrong to give up any electoral gain.

 "This is what the West will have to contend with," says Eric Trager, an expert on the Muslim Brotherhood at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

Islamist parties tend to view democratic institutions as useful in the short run but lack a commitment to democratic values such as checks and balances that allow political minorities to force compromise on the majority, and "the result of that is instability," Trager says.

"People (in the opposition) are no longer willing to tolerate a situation in which even elected government acts repressively," he says. "That's not to say those elected governments will be replaced, but the reaction can be destabilizing and economically harmful."

Hamid also thinks the conflict between Islamist governments and those who do not support them fully will continue to spread because the Arab world and Turkey are dealing with the role of religion in public life, after decades of repression, and the two sides are far apart ideologically.

Each side thinks that "If your opponents win it will change the fundamental nature of society or the state," Hamid says.

Feeling are so strong in Egypt, that some secularists have said they prefer a restoration of the military dictatorship that governed the country for decades,

Hamid also thinks the conflict will be seen in more countries, especially Syria, where the Islamist-secularist and sectarian fault lines are the reason many Syrians fear a mostly Sunni rebellion will succeed.

Michael Rubin, an analyst at the American Enterprise Institute, says many Turks believe Erdogan has become less committed to democracy and that the Turkish leader "has dispensed with this idea that there should be compromise," Rubin says.

Rather than draw a parallel with Tunisia, however, Rubin sees similarities with another popular, elected throwback kind of president: Valdimir Putin of Russia, who has overseen a drastic backslide on democracy in the former Soviet Union.

"In the Arab Spring a lot of the protesters were Islamists" bringing down long-standing dictatorships, Rubin says. "In the Turkish spring, people feel the country's no longer democratic. He (Erdogan) seems to combine the worst aspects of Morsi and Putin."


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 04, 2013, 10:31:50 am
Turkey protests: second fatality reported as widespread civil unrest continues
A 22-year-old man died in a hospital after being shot during protests in southern Turkey, as trade unions prepare to strike in support of those on the streets.


Turkish gov't offers apology as protests continue

Workers strike in support of Turkey protests
Two-day strike under way to protest over government's harsh response to demonstrations that have swept the nation.


Turkish Official Seeks to Calm Anti-Government Protests
Turkey's deputy prime minister sought to mollify tens of thousands of anti-government demonstrators on Tuesday by apologizing for a police crackdown on a peaceful protest that triggered five days of rioting across the country.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 04, 2013, 12:08:27 pm
I visited Turkey 20 years ago - while Islam didn't exactly represent the majority in their government then(not until the turn of the century), nonetheless it was such a dominant religion there, that the word religion pretty much scared off the rest of the citizens, which is why the non-Islam people would identify themselves as secular.

No, I am NOT defending them or anything, but something I observed when I was there. When we're saved, the Lord doesn't give us the spirit of fear, but of peace and of a sound mind, and the fear of man bringeth a snare. But it seems like those non-Islam people there, at least when I was there, chose to live in fear.

Guess it's no surprise why Islam ended up being the majority in their government by the turn of the century, and look where they are now.

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Kilika on June 04, 2013, 02:08:31 pm
See, that's the unbelieving world. It uses fear and intimidation, and the unbelieving masses are in fear because they don't have Jesus in their heart. They live without Jesus, in darkness, fear and torment.

The world just loves to strong-arm people. It's how they roll, but they too are doing it out of fear. They know in that world, it truly is "dog eat dog", and what they think is "survival" of the fittest, which isn't survival at all, but eternal death.

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 08, 2013, 06:44:38 am
Thousands of Turks defy Erdogan's call for end to protest

Thousands of Turks dug in on Saturday for a weekend of anti-government demonstrations despite Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's demand for an immediate end to protests that have spawned the most violent riots of his decade in power.
In central Istanbul's Taksim Square, where riot police backed by helicopters and armored vehicles first clashed with protesters a week ago, activists spent the night in a makeshift protest camp, sleeping in tents and vandalized buses, or wrapped in blankets under plane trees.

Police fired teargas and water cannon on protesters in the working class Gazi neighborhood of Istanbul, which saw heavy clashes with police in the 1990s, but the situation was quieter in the capital Ankara, where a few dozen demonstrators remained in tents in a central park.

In a rare show of unity, fans from Istanbul's three main football clubs Besiktas, Galatasaray and Fenerbahce, who have been heavily involved in some of the protests, plan simultaneous marches on Taksim later on Saturday.

What began as a campaign against the redevelopment of Gezi Park in a corner of Istanbul's Taksim Square spiraled into an unprecedented display of public anger over the perceived authoritarianism of Erdogan and his Islamist-rooted AK Party.

Riot police have clashed with groups of protesters night after night in cities across the country, leaving three dead and close to 5,000 injured, according to medics.

Erdogan has given no indication of plans to remove tents in Taksim, around which protesters have built barricades of paving stones and corrugated iron, clogging part of central Istanbul.

"Let them attack, they can't stop us," a member of the Turkish Communist Party shouted through loudspeakers to a cheering crowd from on top of a white van in the square.

Taksim is lined by luxury hotels that should be doing a roaring trade as the summer season starts in one of the world's most-visited cities. But a forced eviction might trigger a repeat of the clashes seen earlier in the week.


The gatherings mark a challenge to a leader whose authority is built on three successive election victories and Erdogan takes the protests as a personal affront.

Sources close to the AK Party that Erdogan founded in 2001 suggest a sense of siege within the leadership, with influential if disparate forces worried about the extent of his power.

Citing a party source, the Radikal newspaper said an AK Party executive meeting on Saturday may discuss the possibility of calling early elections, although it could also change party rules to enable Erdogan to seek a fourth term as prime minister rather than running for the presidency.

The party has made no public statement on the agenda.

Erdogan has made clear he has no intention of stepping aside - pointing to the AK Party's 50 percent of the vote in the last election - and has no clear rivals inside the party or outside.

He has enacted many democratic reforms, taming a military that toppled four governments in four decades, starting entry talks with the European Union and forging peace talks with Kurdish rebels to end a three-decade-old war.

But in recent years, critics say his style, always forceful and emotional, has become authoritarian.

Media has come under pressure, opponents have been arrested over alleged coup plots, and moves such as restrictions on alcohol sales have unsettled secular middle-class Turks who are sensitive to any encroachment of religion on their daily lives.

"These protests are partly a result of his success in economic and social transformation. There's a new generation who doesn't want to be bullied by the prime minister and who is afraid their lifestyle is in danger," said Joost Lagendijk, a former European parliamentarian and Istanbul-based academic.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 08, 2013, 08:36:36 am
Mayor of Istanbul: Plans to build replica of former Ottoman barracks where Gezi Park is located going ahead

Plans to build the replica of former Ottoman barracks where Gezi Park is located are going ahead, the Mayor of Istanbul, Kadir Topbas, said on Saturday at a press conference.

He also said, however, that the structure will not be make use of a shopping mall, a residance or a hotel.

"We are working on a plan to use the structure as a city museum", Topbas said.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 08, 2013, 10:39:57 pm
Egypt's Islamists, opposition closely eye Turkey

CAIRO (AP) — Liberal-minded Egyptians and supporters of the ruling Muslim Brotherhood now share one thing: the rival sides are closely following protests in Turkey, a country that has provided the heavily polarized and increasingly impoverished Egyptians with a tantalizing model for marrying Islamist government with a secular establishment and achieving prosperity along the way.

Turkey, a NATO member with a mostly Muslim population has been touted as a democratic model for Egypt and other Arab countries swept up in popular revolts over the past two years.

But scenes of tens of thousands of Turks filling Istanbul's central Taksim Square for more than a week of anti-government protests reminiscent of the mass demonstrations in Cairo's Tahrir Square that led to the 2011 ouster of authoritarian leader Hosni Mubarak have alarmed Islamists in both countries.

The rapid unraveling of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's image at home has spilled into Egypt in what experts say is a warning to Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood as they balance the need to meet the demands of both the deeply conservative and the secular communities in the Arab world's most populous nation.

"This is certainly a bad omen for Islamists," said Mohammed Abdel-Kader Khalil, a Cairo-based senior researcher at the East Center for Strategic and Regional Studies. "Their model is violently shaking as the man they say they want to emulate has been dealt a blow."

Experts are more sanguine: Given the vast differences in history and circumstances, Taksim Square, they warn, is no Tahrir.

"Various parties attempt to make a connection between the so-called Turkish model and the Egyptian. They are very mistaken. The two are vastly different," said Amr Ismail Adly, a Turkish affairs scholar in Cairo. "Portraying this as a struggle between secularism and Islam is also oversimplifying a much more complex issue given the diversity of protesters and motives."

For the first time in a decade of power, however, Erdogan appears vulnerable and embattled despite the country's stunning economic performance and heightened international profile.

The demonstrations began May 31 with a violent police crackdown against a small protest over a plan to develop the landmark Taksim Square and spread to dozens of cities amid discontent over what critics see as the prime minister's increasing authoritarianism and efforts to encroach on secular lifestyles.

His critics point to attempts to curtail the selling and promotion of alcohol, his comments on how women should dress and statements that each woman should have at least three children.

A devout Muslim who says he is committed to upholding Turkey's secular tradition, Erdogan vehemently rejects charges of autocracy and points out that he enjoyed 50 percent support in the last elections in 2011.

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood has been cool to Turkey's secular leaning but gave Erdogan a hero's welcome when he visited Egypt last year, erecting giant billboards with his image on Cairo's main bridges and boulevards.

The Brotherhood's deputy leader Khairat el-Shater depicted himself as "Egypt's Erdogan" during his short-lived presidential campaign last year before he was thrown out of the race over a Mubarak-era conviction.

The opposition and many other Egyptians, meanwhile, have been skeptical about the analogy with the Turkish model, calling it a Brotherhood tactic to assuage fears in the West and at home that it would try to impose strict Islamic rule even as its members dominate the country's power structures.

Khalil, the Cairo-based researcher, said the Brotherhood actually "inverted the model" by trying to monopolize power through the infusion of its members in state institutions under the pretext of battling the "deep state," a term used in Turkey to refer to a network of military and civilian allies accused of trying to destabilize the country during the early years of Erdogan's rule.

The term is repeatedly used by Brotherhood leaders to refer to the legacy of Mubarak's 29-year regime.

"They wanted to consolidate power, take control of state institutions while the streets are boiling and the economy in shambles," said Khalil, the researcher. "They are in a rush and they didn't really benefit from Turkey's experience."

Opposition activists look to the Turkey protests — with a daily stream of pictures of injured Turkish protesters and people acting as human shields against water cannons — as a way to boost their continued movement and demonstrations against Morsi's rule, which they claim has over a very short time reproduced the authoritarian regime ousted in 2011.

"The impact is doubled in Egypt," said prominent activist Hossam el-Hamalawy. "On one hand this is a blow to Islamic project which Islamists held up high as a model they were preaching with and on the other hand, any movement in any country will have a domino effect."

But Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood appeared to be only hardening its stance in the wake of the protests.

A member of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood's political arm, Farid Ismail, said protests in both countries amount to a "war, not against the regime or President Mohammed Morsi, but against the Islamic identity."

"It is a struggle between right and wrong," he added in remarks at a rally this week in a Nile Delta province north of Cairo.

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 09, 2013, 06:44:49 am
Turkish protesters call more demonstrations, Erdogan defiant
ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkish protest organizers called for a demonstration on Sunday to keep up pressure on the government to sack those responsible for a violent police crackdown and to abandon plans to redevelop a central Istanbul square.
Tens of thousands of Turks massed in Taksim Square late on Saturday, where riot police backed by helicopters and armored vehicles first clashed with protesters a week ago, some chanting for Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan to resign.
Erdogan remained defiant. His AK Party on Saturday ruled out early elections and senior party officials said they may call their own public meetings in Istanbul and Ankara next week.
Still by far the country's most popular politician, Erdogan has pressed ahead with government business as usual.
"My beloved brothers, we're walking towards a better Turkey. Don't allow those who attempt to plant divisive seeds to do so," he told a crowd of supporters at the airport in the southern city of Adana, on his way to open a sporting event.
What began as a campaign against government plans to build over Gezi Park in Taksim Square, spiraled into an unprecedented display of public anger over the perceived authoritarianism of Erdogan and his Islamist-rooted AK Party.
Police fired teargas and water cannon at protesters night after night in Istanbul and Ankara last week, in clashes which have left three dead and close to 5,000 injured.
The organizers of the initial protests in Taksim, calling themselves Taksim Solidarity, repeated their call for the redevelopment plans to be abandoned, police use of teargas to be banned, those responsible for police violence to be dismissed and bans on demonstrations to be lifted.
"The demands are obvious. We call on government to take account of the reaction (on the street), act responsibly and fulfill demands being expressed by millions of people everyday," the group said in a statement.
It called for another mass rally later on Sunday around Gezi Park, a leafy corner of the square where hundreds of activists have been sleeping in tents and vandalized buses, or wrapped in blankets under plane trees over the past week.
Erdogan has given no indication of plans to clear out Taksim, around which protesters have built dozens of barricades made of ripped up paving stones, street signs, vandalized vehicles and corrugated iron, clogging part of the city centre.
Taksim is lined by luxury hotels that should be doing a roaring trade as the summer season starts in one of the world's most-visited cities. But a forced eviction might trigger a repeat of the clashes seen earlier in the week, which brought international condemnation.
Erdogan has made clear he has no intention of stepping aside, pointing to his AK Party's rising share of the vote in the country's past three elections, and has no clear rivals inside the party or out.
He has enacted many democratic reforms, taming a military that toppled four governments in four decades, starting entry talks with the European Union and forging peace talks with Kurdish rebels to end a three-decade-old war.
But in recent years, critics say his style, always forceful and emotional, has become authoritarian.
Media have come under pressure, opponents have been arrested over alleged coup plots, and moves such as restrictions on alcohol sales have unsettled secular middle-class Turks who are sensitive to any encroachment of religion on their daily lives.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 09, 2013, 09:47:16 am
At least to me, looks like another Jesuit-staged event, as these protests there are really in over-drive.

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 11, 2013, 01:19:06 pm
Clashes in Turkey

"Turkey has been hit by days of violent demonstrations since May 31, sparked by anger over excessive police force against protesters holding a sit-in against redevelopment of Istanbul's main Taksim Square." "Hundreds of police in riot gear forced through barricades in Istanbul's central Taksim Square early June 11, pushing many of the protesters who had occupied the square for more than a week into a nearby park." (AP)



Protesters react after an explosion on a barricade during clashes in Istanbul's Taksim square June 11, 2013. Riot police fired water cannon and teargas at hundreds of protesters in Istanbul's Taksim Square on Tuesday, Reuters witnesses said, entering the square for the first time since demonstrations against plans to develop a park there turned violent. REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis (TURKEY - Tags: CIVIL UNREST POLITICS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Kilika on June 11, 2013, 01:56:52 pm
It's starting to look like Syria.

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 11, 2013, 06:55:07 pm
Riot Police Roll Into Disputed Square in Istanbul...

Rubber Bullets, Water Cannons...

PM: 'No more tolerance'...

'Massive clouds of tear gas'...

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 11, 2013, 07:27:39 pm
This has gotten almost 24/7 coverage on the MSM today.

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 11, 2013, 07:29:45 pm
Clashes in Istanbul extend into night in Taksim

Riot police fired tear gas, water cannon and rubber bullets in day-long clashes that lasted into the early hours Wednesday, overwhelming protesters who had been occupying Istanbul's central Taksim Square and its adjacent Gezi Park in the country's most severe anti-government protests in decades.

The crisis has left Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan looking vulnerable for the first time in his decade in power and has threatened to tarnish the international image of Turkey, a Muslim majority country with a strongly secular tradition, a burgeoning economy and close ties with the United States.

Thousands of police moved in early Tuesday, pushing past improvised barricades set up by the protesters who have swarmed through the massive square and accompanying Gezi Park in their tens of thousands for the past 12 days.

Police fired repeated rounds of tear gas that rose in stinging plumes of acrid smoke from the square in running battles with protesters hurling fireworks, bottles, rocks and firebombs. In a cat-and-mouse game that lasted all day, the police repeatedly cleared the square, only for demonstrators to return.

More than 30,000 converged on the square again as dusk fell and were repelled by water cannon, rubber bullets and tear gas after Istanbul's governor, Huseyin Avni Mutlu, said the police came under attack by "marginal groups."

The area reverberated with the echoes of exploding tear gas canisters into the night, while volunteers ferried dozens of injured people to waiting ambulances.

Early Wednesday, police surrounded Gezi Park, where protesters had set up a tent city, firing repeated rounds of tear gas into the area. Protesters scrambled to flee from the choking chemicals, abandoning tents and belongings. A few dozen gradually returned after the column of riot police had passed, surveying the damage.

A peaceful demonstration against Gezi Park's redevelopment that began more than two weeks ago has grown into the biggest test of Erdogan's authority in his decade of power, sparked by outrage over a violent police crackdown on May 31 against a peaceful sit-in in the park.

The unrest has spread to 78 cities across the country, with protesters championing their objections to what they say is the prime minister's increasingly authoritarian style and his perceived attempts to impose a religious and conservative lifestyle on a country with secular laws — charges he rejects.

Four people have been killed, including a policeman, and about 5,000 have been treated for injuries or the effects of tear gas, according to the Turkish Human Rights Foundation.

Gezi Park, with its thousands of camped-out demonstrators young and old, has become the symbol of the protests. Both the governor and the police initially promised that only Taksim Square would be cleared, not the park.

But late into the night, the governor indicated a more muscular police sweep was imminent.

"We will open the square when everything normalizes in the area, and our security forces completely control the area," Mutlu told A Haber news channel. "Our children who stay at Gezi Park are at risk, because we will clean the area of the marginal groups," he said, referring to what the government has said are troublemakers among the protesters.

"We won't allow our government to be seen as weak," Mutlu said.

Some 300 miles (500 kilometers) away in Ankara, the capital, police fired water cannon and tear gas to disperse several hundred protesters — some throwing stones — who gathered in sympathy with the Istanbul counterparts.

Tuesday's clashes came a day after Taksim saw its smallest gathering since the demonstrations began. The government had said Erdogan would meet with some of those occupying the park on Wednesday to hear their views.

"The relative calm yesterday was deceptive," said Robert O'Daly, Turkey analyst for the Economist Intelligence Unit.

"Mr. Erdogan's offer of dialogue appears to have been merely tactical. The appearance of riot police in the square this morning and renewed use of teargas against the protesters fits better with his defiant rhetoric," he said.

Erdogan, a devout Muslim, says he is committed to Turkey's secular laws and denies charges of an authoritarian manner. As he defended his tough stance, he gave critics little hope of a shift in his position.

"Were we supposed to kneel before them and say, 'Please remove your pieces of rags?'" he asked, referring to the dozens of banners and flags the protesters had festooned in the square. "They can call me harsh, but this Tayyip Erdogan won't change."

Confident of his position of power after winning the last elections in 2011 with 50 percent of the vote, Erdogan has insisted he will prevail. He made it clear that he has come to the end of his patience with the protesters, whom he accused of sullying Turkey's image abroad and being vandals and troublemakers.

"To those who ... are at Taksim and elsewhere taking part in the demonstrations with sincere feelings: I call on you to leave those places and to end these incidents and I send you my love. But for those who want to continue with the incidents I say: 'It's over.' As of now we have no tolerance for them."

"Not only will we end the actions, we will be at the necks of the provocateurs and terrorists, and no one will get away with it," he added.
His words, accompanied by the repeated rounds of tear gas that left many choking for breath, seemed to gird the resolve of many in the park rather than weaken it.

But some protesters also had harsh words for those among the demonstrators who had thrown rocks and firebombs at police during the day.
"They're taking advantage of the situation," said Melda, a 29-year-old cook who rushed to the park Tuesday morning when she heard of the police intervention. Fearful of losing her job for participating in the protests, she asked that her surname not be used. "And then the prime minister calls us all terrorists."

On Tuesday, Erdogan, who has called major pro-government rallies in Ankara and Istanbul this weekend, insisted again that the unrest was part of a conspiracy against his government.

The demonstrators, he said, " are being used by some financial institutions, the interest rate lobby and media groups to (harm) Turkey's economy and (scare away) investments."


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 11, 2013, 07:31:41 pm
This has gotten almost 24/7 coverage on the MSM today.

I would imagine it would, we have a "democratic" nato country devolving into an Islamic SPRING country. Whos next? France? Denmark?

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 11, 2013, 07:48:29 pm
I would imagine it would, we have a "democratic" nato country devolving into an Islamic SPRING country. Whos next? France? Denmark?

Ah...that's what this is all about...

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 12, 2013, 03:19:44 pm
Erdoğan's chilling warning: 'these protests will be over in 24 hours'
'We have not responded to punches with punches. From now on security forces will respond differently,' Turkish PM says

 :o  :o

Turkey's prime minister defied a growing wave of international criticism on Wednesday and issued a chilling warning to the protesters who have captured central Istanbul for a fortnight, declaring that the demonstrations against his rule would be over within 24 hours.

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's ultimatum, which he said was conveyed to his police chief and interior minister, ratcheted up the tension in Turkey after a relatively calm day following the mass teargas attacks by riot police in Istanbul city centre on Tuesday evening.

"We have not responded to punches with punches. From now on security forces will respond differently," Erdoğan said after meeting a team said to be representing the protesters for the first time. "This issue will be over in 24 hours."

The sense of a looming denouement at Gezi Park off Taksim Square in central Istanbul was reinforced when a deputy leader of Erdoğan's ruling Justice and Development party (AKP) said the park had to be cleared of demonstrators as soon as possible.

Thousands of protesters again gathered at the park on Wednesday evening, with phalanxes of riot police marshalling nearby.

The ruling party's deputy chairman and government Hüseyin Çelik added that a city-wide referendum could be held on the initial issue that sparked the wave of national protest – whether the park should be demolished to make way for a shopping mall and a replica of an old military barracks.

The belligerent statement, contrasting with more conciliatory language from President Abdullah Gül, who urged dialogue with legitimate peaceful protesters, the vast majority of the tens of thousands who have taken to the streets over the past two weeks.

The sense of a final showdown was reinforced by Istanbul's governor, Hüseyin Avni Mutlu, who ordered the protesters to clear the park for their own "safety".

"Those who attacked [the police] are amongst the young people in Gezi Park … This is why they need to vacate the premises as soon as possible. Families should take their children out of there," he warned.

Protest leaders in the park, however, pledged to stay put as around 1,000 lawyers also took to the streets in an unusual escalation of the demonstrations to complain about the detention of 45 of their colleagues on Tuesday and to voice solidarity with the "resistance".

Activist Tekin Deniz said of the talks in Ankara: "This delegation is made up by the prime minister, it does not represent any of us. These meetings are a joke."

The umbrella group behind the protest uniting dozens of trade and professional associations, Taksim Solidarity, denounced the talks with the prime minister in Ankara as illegitimate.

"No meeting, while the police violence disregarding right to life so relentlessly continues in and around the Gezi Park, will produce results," it said. "We are waiting for you in Gezi Park. We are here and we are not leaving."

In the strongest criticism yet of Erdoğan's hard line, the European Union contradicted the prime minister and voiced support for the protesters, saying they had been largely peaceful and subject to indiscriminate violence from riot police. It demanded an investigation of the extreme reaction, and called on Erdogan to cancel big rallies of his Justice and Development party (AKP) scheduled for the coming weekend.

"There is a real polarisation of opinion. Major AKP rallies in Istanbul and Ankara this weekend would risk adding to the tension when we need to see a de-escalation," said Catherine Ashton, the EU's foreign policy chief.

Guido Westerwelle, the German foreign minister, echoed the message from Brussels.

"We expect Prime Minister Erdoğan to de-escalate the situation and to seek a constructive exchange and peaceful dialogue."

President Gül emphasised that peaceful and violent protesters should not be lumped together. "If people have objections then we need to engage in a dialogue with them. It is our duty to hear what they have to say," he said.

The president and the prime minister, both founders of the AKP and long-term associates, have struck quite different tones over the past 10 days, fuelling speculation of a power struggle or factional disputes at the top of the AKP which has governed Turkey for a decade and remains popular.

In unusually strong criticism of Erdoğan, Ashton said that many people in Turkey felt they were not being listened to.

"We have seen too many examples of excessive police force over the past two weeks – close range use of tear gas, water cannons, pepper spray, plastic bullets – against protesters who have been overwhelmingly peaceful," she said.

In a direct reference to Erdoğan, Ashton added: "Democratically elected governments – even the most successful of them, which have enjoyed three election victories and have half the population's support – still need to take account of the needs and expectations of those who don't feel represented. Peaceful demonstrations are a legitimate way for such groups to express their views."


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 17, 2013, 12:03:40 pm
Turkish Police: Protesters in Taksim Considered Terrorists

Anyone who enters Istanbul’s Taksim Square will be considered a member or a supporter of a terrorist organization, says Turkish minister.


Anyone who enters Istanbul’s Taksim Square will be considered a member or a supporter of a terrorist organization, Turkey’s European Union minister said in a televised interview late last night, according to Hurriyet Daily News.

“I request our citizens who supported the protests until today kindly to return to their homes,” Egemen Bagış said in an interview on broadcast station A Haber.

“From now on the state will unfortunately have to consider everyone who remains there a supporter or member of a terror organization,” he said. “Our prime minister has already assured [activists] about their aim with the protests. The protests from now on will play into the hands of some separatist organizations that want to break the peace and prioritize vandalism and terrorism.”

High-ranking Turkish officials have been posting warnings on the issue and everyone should act accordingly, he said.

Bagış continued to criticize the foreign media for exaggerating the protests.

“Unfortunately, the foreign press has made a big mistake on this issue,” he said, saying that they wanted to reflect Turkey as a country where life has come to a stand-still.

“Hours-long broadcasting that is even not interrupted by commercials has damaged Turkey’s image,” he said.

“But these long broadcasts surely have a financial reason, and this will be revealed. International channels such as BBC and CNN never do such broadcasting without any advertisement. Somebody somehow financed these broadcasts. Like our prime minister said, the losses of the interest rate lobby due to low interest rates have exceeded $650 billion in Turkey,” he maintained, according to Hurriyet Daily News. “This drives them crazy and they are doing everything to disturb the calm in our country and win back their losses.”

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 17, 2013, 04:06:19 pm
Turkey threatens to deploy army to end unrest...

Unions prepare strikes...

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 18, 2013, 08:02:41 am
Police arrest dozens in raids across Turkey after protests

Police raided addresses across Turkey on Tuesday and detained dozens of people after nearly three weeks of anti-government protests, local media reported.
State media TRT said 25 people had been detained in the capital Ankara, 13 in Eskisehir to the west and "many" in Turkey's biggest city Istanbul.

A police source confirmed the operation and said: "For now, only provocateurs will be taken for questioning."

Turkey has been rocked by demonstrations that began in and around Istanbul's Taksim Square and turned violent after police sought to clear protesters using teargas and water cannon.

Clashes have erupted in cities across the country, as people protest against Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's leadership.

Erdogan has struck a defiant tone in the face of the biggest public challenge to his 10-year rule, during which he has overseen an economic boom and enjoyed broad popularity.

At a speech on Sunday before hundreds of thousands of supporters in Istanbul he said the disturbances had been manipulated by "terrorists".

Ankara's police anti-terror department said it had no information on the reports of Tuesday's raids.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on June 18, 2013, 03:19:37 pm
Turkey's 'standing man' launches new protest wave

After weeks of sometimes violent confrontation with police, protesters in Turkey have found what could be a more potent form of resistance: standing still.
The trend was launched by performance artist Erdem Gunduz, who stood silently for hours in Istanbul's central Taksim Square on Monday night, in passive defiance of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's violent crackdown on environmental protesters at a park adjacent to Taksim. The square has been sealed off from protesters since police cleared it over the weekend, though pedestrians can still enter.
As Gunduz stood there, others gradually began to join him — and later to replicate his protest in other cities in a wave of imitation driven by social media.
Gunduz apparently made no announcement before he paused Monday evening in the square and didn't move. He stood with his hands in his pockets, staring at an image of Turkey's founding father Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, whose admiration is rooted in his success in imposing secular values on a largely Muslim nation after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire 90 years ago.
When police arrived an hour later, Turkish news media reported, they searched his pockets and his backpack, then left.
Gunduz stayed put. For hours.
When asked by reporters what he was doing, Turkish news agency Dogan said, he responded: "It's evident. The people are not being allowed into Taksim."
Witnesses began calling him "duran adam" — "standing man." Some joined him in Taksim, while others began doing the same in other Turkish cities. In Ankara, the capital, a woman stood still at the spot where a protester had been killed.
Early Tuesday morning, police intervened and dispersed the crowd around Gunduz, detaining several protesters. It wasn't clear whether Gunduz was among those arrested, though he was free later Tuesday. Later Tuesday, others returned and began silent vigils.
Patrick Adams, an American freelance journalist, said his friend and neighbor is a dancer originally from Izmir, Turkey's third-largest city. Gunduz has a degree in fine arts, he said, and has been doing street performances for years.
Adams said he doesn't know Gunduz to be politically active, but isn't surprised by his silent act.
"He's completely courageous," Adams said.
Adams said Gunduz sent him a message Tuesday to say that he was at home and doing fine. Gunduz couldn't be reached directly.
Gunduz's act, amplified by social media, had a remarkably swift effect on the protests.
Erdogan appeared to be seizing the initiative after large weekend rallies in which he ordered Taksim Square to be cleared. The government has capitalized on sporadic scenes of violence amid the generally peaceful protest movement.
Gunduz's act of non-violence could be harder to deal with, as it could pressure the government to arrest or disperse people who are doing nothing more than standing still.
Interior Minister Muammer Guler said authorities wouldn't intervene against any demonstration that doesn't threaten public order, but that pledge could be tested quickly.
Activists called for a nationwide standing protest later Tuesday.
"We need to congratulate him (Gunduz)," said Ozgur Volkan, who joined the standing protesters in Taksim. "He started up a very great movement."


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 19, 2013, 10:18:11 am
Turkey's Erdogan welcomes Hamas leaders

As European Union cancels a parliamentary visit to Ankara, Erdogan hosts Hamas heads Mashaal, Haniyeh.

Even as the EU canceled a parliamentary visit to Ankara scheduled for Wednesday, and UN Secretary-General Ban Kimoon criticized Turkey for its handling of the recent protests, embattled Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday welcomed Hamas leaders Khaled Mashaal and Ismail Haniyeh for meetings in the Turkish capital.

It was not immediately clear if the arrival of the Hamas leaders was in lieu of a visit Erdogan has said he intended to make to Gaza.

Shortly after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu phoned Erdogan in March to apologize for operational errors that might have caused loss of life on the i, Erdogan announced he would visit Gaza in April. The planned visit, which annoyed the US because it seemed to undermine the Palestinian Authority, was then pushed off until after Erdogan’s mid-May visit to Washington.

No new date has yet been announced, although Erdogan has said he intends to go through with the visit despite American objections.

Officials in both the Prime Minister’s Office and the Foreign Ministry refrained from commenting on the Hamas leaders visit to Ankara.

The Turkish daily Today’s Zaman said Mashaal and Haniyeh were scheduled to meet Erdogan late Tuesday. The “Palestinian Embassy” in Ankara told the paper they were not informed by either Ankara or Hamas about the visit beforehand.

Today’s Zaman speculated that the Hamas leaders were looking for Turkish help in reconciling differences inside the organization between one camp interested in aligning itself with Iran and Syria, and another which wanted to move closer to Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

While Israel has been careful not to comment on either Erdogan’s crackdown on the protests or at his hints of a Jewish conspiracy behind them, the American Jewish Committee had no such compunctions, issuing a statement saying it was “deeply dismayed” by comments of Erdogan and others in Turkey suggesting Jews were behind the protests.

“Incendiary words have consequences,” said AJC executive director David Harris, who urged Turkey’s political leadership and media to end “the fictitious conspiracy theories.”

In a letter to Turkey’s ambassador to the United States, according to an AJC statement, the organization expressed concern about Erdogan’s “delusional prejudices” regarding Jews. Erdogan recently suggested that unrest in Turkey could be attributed to “the interest-rate lobby,” a term that has been associated in the Turkish media in the past with an alleged conspiracy of Jewish businessmen.

“Whatever protests and opposition Prime Minister Erdogan may face domestically, they are home-grown,” said Harris.

“To blame such disturbances on external forces and to resort to age-old Jewish conspiracy canards is pure cowardice and runs the risk of incitement. Erdogan should be called to task by responsible world leaders for such crude tactics rather than facing up to the reality that a significant segment of the Turkish public is challenging his increasingly authoritarian rule.”

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Kilika on June 19, 2013, 01:59:54 pm
Turkey has all but fallen into an Islamic state.

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 23, 2013, 08:18:08 am
Clashes in Istanbul after Erdogan says protests serve Turkey's enemies
06/22/2013 21:02

Riot police, and thousands of protesters clash in Taksim Square for first time in nearly a week.

The crowd quickly scattered, and water cannon trucks parked at several entry points to Taksim to prevent people from regrouping.

People living around the square banged pots and pans, a sign of solidarity with protesters throughout more than three weeks of unrest in Istanbul and other cities across Turkey. Demonstrators shouted "Police, don't betray your people!".

Shortly before the water cannon were fired, protesters had been throwing red carnations in the direction of a line of riot police as it moved slowly towards them to clear the area. 

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan told thousands of supporters in the Black Sea city of Samsun on Saturday that weeks of often violent protests against his government had played into the hands of Turkey's enemies.

As he finished speaking, around 10,000 protesters had gathered in Istanbul's Taksim Square, many of them to attend a planned laying down of carnations in memory of the four people who had been killed in the unrest.

The mood at the scene of some of the fiercest clashes between demonstrators and police firing teargas and water cannon was initially calm, with hundreds of riot police looking on as the crowd chanted "this is just the start, the struggle will continue".

In Samsun, a crowd of some 15,000 of Erdogan's AK Party faithful cheered and waved Turkish flags as he called on the public to give their answer to protests at the ballot box when Turkey holds municipal elections next March.

The rally in the party stronghold was the fourth in a series of mass meetings which Erdogan has called since demonstrations began in Istanbul at the start of June in an unprecedented challenge on the streets to his rule.

The blunt-talking 59-year-old said opponents both within Turkey and abroad had orchestrated the demonstrations, saying an "interest rate lobby" of speculators in financial markets had benefited from the unrest.

"Who won from these three weeks of protests? The interest rate lobby, Turkey's enemies," Erdogan said from a stage emblazoned with his portrait and a slogan calling for his supporters to "thwart the big game" played out against Turkey.

"Who lost from these protests? Turkey's economy, even if to a small extent, tourism lost. They overshadowed and stained Turkey's image and international power," he said.

In a speech appealing to his conservative grassroots support, Erdogan made fresh accusations that those involved in the protests in Turkey's main western cities were disrespectful towards Islam, the religion of the vast majority of Turkey.

"Let them go into mosques in their shoes, let them drink alcohol in our mosques, let them raise their hand to our headscarved girls. One prayer from our people is enough to frustrate their plans," Erdogan said, before tossing red carnations to the crowd after his speech.


The protests have underlined divisions in Turkish society between religious conservatives who form the bedrock of Erdogan's support, and more liberal Turks who have swelled the ranks of peaceful demonstrators.

Erdogan, who won his third consecutive election in 2011 with 50 percent support, has been riled by the open show of dissent, and sees himself as a champion of democratic reform.

During his 10-year rule, which has seen him unchallenged on the political stage, he has enacted reforms that include curbing powers of an army that toppled four governments in four decades and pursuing an end to 30 years of Kurdish rebellion.

But he brooks little dissent. Hundreds of military officers have been jailed on charges of plotting a coup against Erdogan.

A court near Istanbul said on Friday it will announce on Aug. 5 its verdict on nearly 300 defendants, including academics, journalists and politicians, accused of separate plots to overthrow the government.

But among the large section of Turkey's 76 million people who do not back him, Erdogan is viewed as increasingly authoritarian and too quick to meddle in their private lives.

Recent restrictions on the sale of alcohol have fuelled their suspicions that he has a creeping Islamist agenda.

That resentment spilled into open protest when police cracked down on a group of environmentalists opposed to his plans to develop a central Istanbul park in late May, spreading to other cities and turning violent night after night.

Sporadic clashes have continued in some cities this week, but Istanbul has been calm as many people adopted a silent show of defiance inspired by the so-called "Standing Man" protester.

On Sunday, Erdogan will address a rally in the eastern city of Erzurum, also an AK Party stronghold.

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on July 02, 2013, 10:29:26 am
Turkish PM on unrest: Jews!


Turkish deputy prime minister denies remarks on 'Jewish diaspora'

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Beşir Atalay has denied media reports that he blamed the Jewish diaspora for the Gezi unrest.

Atalay’s press office said in a written statement today that the minister had not used such an expression.

“There are some circles that are jealous of Turkey’s growth. They are all uniting, on one side the Jewish diaspora,” Cihan News Agency quoted him in a video as saying on July 1 in the Central Anatolian province of Kırıkkale in an earlier report.

Before the statement from Atalay’s office, the Turkish Jewish community issued a press release on its website, saying they were trying to obtain more information about the remarks with regard to the details, meaning and content.

“We would like to express our concern that all Jews around the world, including Turkish Jews, may become the target because of this sort of generalization in almost every situation,” the statement read.

Atalay also reportedly repeated government claims that the international media had played a big role in “the conspiracy” and had led the unrest “well.” “The ones trying to block the way of Great Turkey will not succeed,” he said.

“There are some circles that are jealous of Turkey’s growth. They are all uniting, on one side the Jewish diaspora. You saw the foreign media’s attitude during the Gezi Park incidents; they bought it and started broadcasting immediately, without doing an evaluation of the [situation],” Atalay is heard in a video shooting also seen by the Daily News.

The Gezi protests started May 27, triggered by Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s plan to remove a unique green area, Gezi Park, next to the iconic Taksim Square to build a replica of Ottoman artillery barracks and mall.

A sit-in by peaceful protesters turned into mass protests across the country with nearly 2 million people in 79 of the 81 Turkish cities attending, according to Interior Ministry estimates.

The heavy crackdown by the police with tear gas, water cannons and violent tools drew reaction from local citizens and the world. In total, four people – three protesters and a police officer – have been killed and more than 7,000 people injured, according to the Turkish Medical Association. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has repeatedly blamed an “interest rate lobby” and the world media for boosting the protests.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on December 23, 2013, 06:26:58 am
Istanbul clashes as Turkey PM Erdogan condemns 'plot'

Turkish police have used tear gas against thousands of anti-government protesters in Istanbul as Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to break the hands of "plotters". Clashes erupted between protesters and police in Kadikoy Square... In a northern town Mr Erdogan denounced people he said were setting anti-Turkish "traps" to undermine his rule. 


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on March 11, 2014, 03:51:45 pm
Turkish police using water cannons, tear gas against protesters in Istanbul marching over teen's death - @HDNER

Photo: Turkish protests march in remembrance of a teen who died 9 months after he was struck by a canister fired by police - Instagram's trnsmg

Video: Turkish police rushing to the scene of protests in Kadıköy area of Istanbul - Instagram user isikcant

Police in Kadıköy district of Istanbul using tear gas to clear streets - Instagram user cansuusari

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on March 28, 2014, 12:18:48 pm
Turkey bans YouTube after Syria security talk leaked

Turkey banned YouTube on Thursday after the video-sharing website was used to spread damaging leaked audio files from a state security meeting debating possible military action in Syria.

The recording purports to be of senior Turkish government, military and spy officials discussing plans to stage an armed clash in Syria or a missile attack that would serve as a pretext for a military response.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan -- already ensnared in a corruption scandal and hit by recent mass protests ahead of crucial local elections on Sunday -- angrily lashed out at his political opponents for leaking the recording.

"They have leaked something on YouTube today," he told a campaign rally in the southeastern province of Diyarbakir. "It was a meeting on our national security. It is a vile, cowardly, immoral act. We will go into their caves. Who are you serving by eavesdropping?"

Erdogan did not mention his foe by name, but he has in the past used the "cave" reference for his former ally-turned-nemesis, US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, whose movement has many followers in the Turkish police and judiciary.

The premier last week banned Twitter, sparking international condemnation, after the micro-blogging service was used to spread a spate of other audio files implicating Erdogan and his inner circle in corruption.

An Ankara court Wednesday overturned that ruling as a limit on free speech. Turkey's telecommunications regulator TIB has 30 days to appeal the decision, and Twitter has yet to be restored, although the ban has been widely circumvented.

- YouTube 'national security threat' -

NATO-member Turkey's European and American allies condemned the YouTube ban.

"This is another desperate and depressing move in Turkey," tweeted European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes.

Deputy State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said the US had been "very strongly saying (to Turkish officials) that they need to stop doing this".

Thursday's YouTube leak is the first to focus on national security. Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu labelled it "a declaration of war against the Turkish state and nation", while his ministry said some sections had been distorted.

TIB said it was blocking YouTube on the grounds of a "primary threat against national security," private NTV television reported.

- 'Justification can be fabricated' -

The audio recording, which could not be independently verified, features a voice that sounds like that of Turkey's spy chief Hakan Fidan saying: "If needed, we will launch an attack there."

The voice also talks about dispatching "four men" and launching missiles, adding: "It is not a problem. A justification can be fabricated."

The discussion also focuses on a historic site inside war-torn Syria that is technically part of Turkish national territory under an historic treaty.

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militant group has threatened to attack the site -- a tomb of Suleyman Shah, grandfather of Ottoman Empire founder Osman -- which is located in Aleppo province.

Another voice, purportedly of Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioglu, is heard saying that "from the point of legitimacy, the whole world would stand by us in case of an operation against ISIL".

Erdogan's parliamentary opponents have in the past accused him of planning military action in Syria to distract voters from his domestic troubles.

Main opposition leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu this month warned that Erdogan "could decide to move the army into Syria before the elections" and cautioned the military against it, saying: "Don't send Turkey on an adventure."

Davutoglu told AFP on Wednesday that "Turkey is ready to take any legitimate step under international law if its national security, including the area where the tomb of Suleyman Shah is situated, is threatened".

In the recording, a voice allegedly belonging to Davutoglu is heard saying: "Between you and me, the prime minister said over the telephone that this (attack) should be used as an opportunity when needed."


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on March 30, 2014, 06:05:42 am
Turkey PM Erdogan faces test in local election

People in Turkey are voting in local elections that analysts say could determine the political future of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. They are the first elections since mass protests erupted last June and a corruption scandal hit the government.   


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on May 01, 2014, 05:10:02 am
Huge police operation in Istanbul ahead of May Day protests; 39,000 police on city streets, 19,000 in Taksim area, reports say - @JoeWSJ

Update: Police fire tear gas and water cannon to block May Day protesters in Istanbul from reaching Taksim Square - @Reuters

Police barricades surround Galatasary Square in Istanbul on May Day - @ibnezra

Tear gas and water cannon in the streets of Istanbul - @SaraFirth_RT

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on May 15, 2014, 02:22:12 pm
Turkey outraged as PM’s aide kicks protester


In this photo taken Wednesday, May 14, 2014 a person identified by Turkish media as Yusuf Yerkel, advisor to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, kicks a protester already held by special forces police members during Erdogan’s visiting Soma, Turkey. Erdogan was visiting the western Turkish mining town of Soma after Turkey’s worst mining accident . AP Photo/Depo Photos) TURKEY OUT ONLINE

rest: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/turkey-outraged-as-pms-aide-kicks-protester/2014/05/15/dc4d1c80-dc36-11e3-a837-8835df6c12c4_story.html

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on May 05, 2016, 07:53:05 pm
Turkey PM Ahmet Davutoglu to quit amid reports of Erdogan rift

Turkey's Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu says he will stand down at an extraordinary congress of his ruling AK Party later this month.

Mr Davutoglu is believed to have fallen from favour because he disapproved of Mr Erdogan's plans to move Turkey to a presidential system of government.

But in a speech, Mr Davutoglu pledged his loyalty to President Erdogan, saying he bore no anger against anyone.

His successor will be chosen when the congress meets on 22 May.

Leadership split spoils the party

Recep Tayyip Erdogan - Turkey's bruised battler

Earlier on Thursday, presidential aide Cemil Ertem said there would be no snap elections following the appointment of a new leader.

He also told Turkish TV that the country and its economy would stabilise further "when a prime minister more closely aligned with President Erdogan takes office".
Brutal end: Analysis by Mark Lowen, Turkey correspondent

When the end came, it was swift and brutal. Ahmet Davutoglu bowed out after crossing the man with the real power: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Mr Davutoglu was expected to be a pliant prime minister but disagreed with some of Mr Erdogan's more controversial policies and crucially wavered in his support to change the constitution to boost the president's powers.

His resignation means Mr Erdogan tightens his control of Turkey and is likely to install a more obedient prime minister. It will worry many Western leaders who find the divisive Mr Erdogan difficult to handle.

And it plunges this crucial country into a political crisis amid security threats and rows over the clampdown on human rights and free speech. The message from President Erdogan to Mr Davutoglu's successor is clear: follow my lead or you'll face the same fate.

Read more from Mark

Mr Davutoglu met Mr Erdogan for nearly two hours on Wednesday but differences were clearly not resolved.

Mr Davutoglu said he would continue as a party legislator and would not try to divide the AKP.

"I feel no reproach, anger or resentment against anyone," he said.

"No-one heard, or will ever hear, a single word from my mouth, from my tongue or my mind against our president."
Why is this happening now?

After he was elected president in 2014, Mr Erdogan hand-picked Mr Davutoglu to succeed him as head of the AK Party (Justice and Development Party).

But the prime minister's unease with Mr Erdogan's plans to move to a presidential system, among other policies, has been evident in recent months.

In a sign of his weakening influence, Mr Davutoglu was stripped last week of the authority to appoint provincial AK Party officials.

What will this mean for Turkey?

The development comes at a time of increasing instability for Turkey, which is tackling an escalating conflict with the rebels of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), attacks by the so-called Islamic State, and an influx of migrants and refugees.

Turkey is also in the midst of implementing a key deal with the European Union, brokered by Mr Davutoglu, to limit the number of refugees flowing across its border in return for accelerated EU accession talks and financial aid.

The future of that agreement, which Mr Davutoglu was seen as having agreed with little input from the president, could be plunged into doubt by his departure.
Who will be his successor?

Among those tipped as successors to Mr Davutoglu are Transport Minister Binali Yildirim, who is close to Mr Erdogan, and Energy Minister Berat Albayrak, who is the president's son-in-law.

The leader will be formally elected at the party congress.
What has been the fall-out?

Main opposition leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu said Mr Davutoglu had been forced from office through the "will of one person".

"Davutoglu's resignation should not be perceived as an internal party issue, all democracy supporters must resist this palace coup," he said.

The political uncertainty also rattled the financial markets. The Turkish lira suffered its heaviest daily loss on Wednesday, down almost 4% against the US dollar.

It rallied slightly on Thursday but was still well off its previous trading levels.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on May 06, 2016, 10:34:48 pm
A dictatorship in the making?

Recep Tayyip Erdogan maneuvered to force out Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, demonstrating that the powerful president does not need the strong executive presidency he seeks since he already wields almost absolute power.

This is the latest sign that Erdogan has consolidated power to such an extent that he can do almost anything he wants. He and his AK Party are working to Islamize the state and its foreign policy all the while continuing to crack down on the media and purge members of the judiciary and police.

Davutoglu apparently became too powerful and independent for Erdogan’s liking and it is almost assured that his replacement will be even more of a sycophant.

This also is a sign that the more power Erdogan acquires, the more erratic his behavior becomes.

“There seems to be a rushed feeling to it, that it happened in the middle of the week and not on the weekend when the stock market is closed,” Dr. Aykan Erdemir, a member of the Turkish parliament from 2011 to 2015 and a senior fellow at the Washington-based Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told The Jerusalem Post in an interview.

The stock market dropped 7 percent in the past week and this “doesn’t fit Erdogan’s narrative of stability,” he said, adding that Erdogan appears to be relying on a small group of close aides.

According to speculation in the Turkish media, the prime minister was not completely following Erdogan’s line and this became a problem since he demands full loyalty and compliance, Erdemir said.

Domestically, Erdogan probably lost confidence that Davutoglu would successfully push through the constitutional change required to put in place an executive presidential system.

In the international arena, the Turkish president “was unhappy with the prime minister’s growing profile and his active EU policies, which leveraged relations with Turkey with himself and against Erdogan.”

Furthermore, Davutoglu had planned to meet with President Barack Obama in private, in contrast to Erdogan’s failure to schedule such a meeting on his visit to the US at the beginning of April.

“Davutoglu’s better reception in DC made Erdogan furious, people say,” continued Erdemir.

“At the end of this month Davutoglu will be replaced with a ‘yes man,’” he said, adding that Erdogan’s son-in-law, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Berat Albayrak, or the president’s longtime ally Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications Minister Binali Yildirim, could receive the post.

Asked about the constitutionality of the dismissal of the prime minister, Erdemir responded that the latest move is 100 percent against the constitution because the president is supposed to be nonpartisan and not involved in party politics.

“Erdogan is no longer a member of the AKP and so he cannot have a say in its internal affairs,” the former Turkish parliament member asserted.

“In the past Turkey had military coups, but I call this a palace coup,” said Erdemir.

“Davutoglu likely got overconfident and started acting independently, forgetting what a control freak Erdogan is.”

Asked what former academic Davutoglu’s future might hold, Erdemir speculated that just like other politicians who fell out with Erdogan, he could be offered a cushy job where the president can keep an eye on him.

Questioned as to anything Davutoglu could do to resist, Erdemir replied that “he is probably looking into how he can fight back, but he knows his chances are nil because of his weak support within AKP, which is to a great extent loyal to Erdogan.”

There is already a de facto executive presidential system, argued Erdemir, adding that “there has never been a more powerful leader in Turkish history.”

The checks and balances are gone and now it can be expected that the government will move forward with plans to revoke parliamentary immunity of pro-Kurdish deputies it deems are supporting terrorism, and will brutally crack down on all dissidents, he said.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on May 15, 2016, 05:56:48 pm
Turkish right-wing dissidents' bid to oust party leader foiled

Members of Turkey's right-wing MHP party were prevented from holding a congress Sunday aimed at unseating longtime leader Devlet Bahceli and recovering ground lost to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's party.

Dissidents from the Nationalist Movement Party launched a campaign to oust Bahceli, 68, after a general election in November in which the party shed half its support -- taking just 40 seats in the 550-member parliament compared to 80 five months previously.

Bahceli, who has led the party for 19 years, said in January that the next party congress would take place in 2018, meaning he would be in charge until then.

But polls show MHP members hungry for change, with over 500 signing a petition in support of holding an extraordinary congress to expedite his ouster.

In a show of unity, MHP's four contenders for leadership, including charismatic former interior minister Meral Aksener, arrived Sunday near the Ankara hotel -- the venue of the congress -- in the same vehicle, escorted by hundreds of cars.

But they faced iron barricades, with police stationing water cannon nearby and denied entry into the hotel.

"Party congresses not party leaders will have the final say," the four candidates said in a joint declaration, near the police barricades.

"Turkish democracy and law were trampled upon," they said.

Party members waving Turkish flags outside the hotel shouted "Bahceli, resign!".

Replacing Bahceli, who lacks appeal with younger voters, could boost support for the MHP at the expense of Erdogan's conservative ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

The outcome could jeopardise Erdogan's ambitions of winning a big enough majority in the next elections to allow him to change the constitution to boost his powers.

- Party congress in June -

Four contenders to succeed Bahceli have emerged, including 59-year-old Aksener, a former deputy speaker of parliament seen as the strongest candidate.

They have vowed to press ahead with the congress, despite the legality of the meeting being called into question and police sealing off the venue.

"There is no such security measure even at the Syrian border," another dissident candidate Sinan Ogan told reporters.

The country's highest appeal court said this week it will rule on the issue within a month, while two lower courts have issued conflicting decisions.

Aksener refused to leave the scene unless she was granted a written official document that they were barred from entry, to use in their legal battle.

Koray Aydin, one of Bahceli's rivals, said on Sunday they would wait for the appeals court's ruling and hold a congress in June in a bid to quash a party law banning leadership change at extraodinary congresses.

MHP lawyer Yucel Bulut said this week holding a congress was "legally impossible" and Ankara governor's office said it would ban the gathering.

Bahceli's challengers accused the government of interfering in the legal process -- allegations Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag dismissed Saturday as "slander".

The AKP needs the support of MHP lawmakers to change the constitution to fulfil Erdogan's ambitions of having a US-style executive presidency.

Like the AKP, the MHP draws its support mainly from conservative Turks in Anatolia and the Black Sea region.

Established in 1969, it was an ultra-radical formation in the 1970s and 80s, with its armed Grey Wolves wing operating death squads that killed numerous left-wing activists and students.

Bahceli took control of the MHP in 1997, seeking to turn it into a mainstream political movement.

The party vehemently opposes any peace deal with the rebel Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) that the army is battling in the southeast.

Bahceli said this month that Erdogan could be sure of the MHP's full support on security as long as the "fight against terrorism continues non-stop."


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on May 23, 2016, 08:38:08 pm
Turkey shifts to presidential system dictatorship, even without constitutional change

As Turkey's incoming prime minister prepares to name his new cabinet, there is little doubt that its primary role will be to rubber-stamp what has already become reality: a shift to a full presidential system with Tayyip Erdogan firmly in charge.

Erdogan on Sunday confirmed Binali Yildirim, a close ally for two decades and a co-founder of the ruling AK Party, as his new prime minister, ensuring government loyalty as he pursues constitutional change to replace Turkey's parliamentary democracy with an executive presidency.

Yildirim's appointment will stamp out any vestiges of resistance in the AKP to Erdogan's plans, three senior party officials said, forecasting that the new cabinet, expected to be announced on Tuesday, would contain only loyalists.

"We have entered a period of a 'de facto' presidential system, where Erdogan's policies will be implemented very clearly," one of the officials said, predicting five or six ministerial changes from the existing team.

"They will lead to complete harmony between Erdogan and the cabinet ... Erdogan’s decisions will be implemented without being touched," the official said, speaking anonymously because the final decision on the appointments has not yet been made.

Erdogan and his supporters see an executive presidency - a Turkish take on the system in the United States or France - as a guarantee against the sort of fractious coalition politics that hampered Turkey's development in the 1990s, when it was an economic backwater with little clout on the world stage.

His opponents, and skeptical Western allies, fear growing authoritarianism. Prosecutors have opened more than 1,800 cases against people for insulting Erdogan since he became president in 2014. Opposition newspapers have been shut and journalists and academics critical of government policies sacked.

European Parliament President Martin Schulz criticized Erdogan's accumulation of power in comments published on Monday, describing it as a "breathtaking departure from European values" in a nation negotiating for membership of the EU.

"We see Turkey under Erdogan on its way to being a one-man-state," he told German newspaper Koelner Stadtanzeiger.

He said the European Parliament would not begin debating visa-free travel for Turks to Europe, a quid pro quo for Ankara's help in curbing illegal migration, until Turkey fulfilled all the criteria including amending its sweeping anti-terrorism laws, which Erdogan has resolutely refused to do.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who has faced criticism for brokering the migration deal with Turkey despite its rights record, said she stressed in a meeting with Erdogan on Monday the need for strong independent institutions.

"I've made clear in the conversation today that I also think we need an independent judicial system, we need independent media and we need a strong parliament," she said, after a meeting on the sidelines of a humanitarian summit in Istanbul.

In a sign of the possible turbulent relations to come with Brussels, Erdogan's economic advisor Yigit Bulut warned Ankara could suspend all of its agreements with the European Union if it failed to "keep its promises".


Erdogan has made clear he wants to seek legitimacy for the presidential system, which will require constitutional change, via a referendum. To do that, he will need the support of at least 330 members of the 550-strong parliament, and unwavering backing from the AKP grass roots on the campaign trail.

Outgoing Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu was seen as too lackluster a supporter of Erdogan's ambitions. By replacing him, Erdogan aims to unify the AKP just as the nationalist opposition is embroiled in a damaging leadership row and the pro-Kurdish opposition faces the risk of its members being prosecuted after their parliamentary immunity was removed last week.

"Now the road to changing the constitution to include a presidential system is completely open," a second senior AKP official told Reuters.

Popular support for such constitutional change is unclear, with a recent IPSOS poll putting it at just 36 percent. The ORC research firm was meanwhile cited in the pro-government Daily Sabah newspaper as putting it at 58 percent.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on July 15, 2016, 08:12:38 pm





Angry Turks drag commander out of turret, beat him...




Military staged coups in 1960, 1971 and 1980, and intervened in 1997...


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on July 18, 2016, 06:55:43 pm
I was swimming with the family when most of this went down but one of the first talking heads i saw was James Woolsey talking at length about how this could have all been staged by Erdogan to create an Islamic State. Sounds good to me and thats exactly what it looks like. Erdogan put down those revolts a year ago and now purged the rest of his government. 

The Worst (Fake?) Coup Ever Has Enthroned Erdogan As A Dictator And Has Sealed Turkey’s Fate

What just happened in Turkey?  I have been thinking about this for a number of hours now, and I have narrowed it down to two options.  Either this was the worst military coup in my entire lifetime, or it was staged.  I will explain how I came to this conclusion below, but in any event the end result of this “coup” is that President Erdogan is even more popular and has consolidated power to an extent that is absolutely breathtaking.  He already was essentially a dictator, but now this “coup” has sealed Turkey’s fate and has pushed them even farther down the path toward becoming a radical Islamic state.

If you are going to conduct a military coup, the very first thing that should be on your list is to decapitate the current leadership structure.  But even though hundreds were killed and approximately 1,400 people were injured during the short-lived conflict, not a single high ranking official was killed or captured.

I don’t know if I have ever heard of a coup where that didn’t happen.  How do you not get a single high ranking official?  Either the planners of this coup were completely incompetent, or it was fake.  And yes, it is entirely possible that only a small portion of the military was involved and this effort represented the best that they could do to try to rescue Turkey from the grip of a ruthless dictator.  Maybe they were hoping that once they lit a spark the public would rally to their cause.

But I don’t know if I am buying that explanation.  There are just way too many inconsistencies.

For instance, according to Reuters F-16s that were controlled by the opposition could have fired on Erdogan’s plane and taken him out, but they didn’t…

“At least two F-16s harassed Erdogan’s plane while it was in the air and en route to Istanbul. They locked their radars on his plane and on two other F-16s protecting him,” a former military officer with knowledge of the events told Reuters.

“Why they didn’t fire is a mystery,” he said.

To me, that simply defies a normal explanation.

In addition, soldiers that took part in the “coup” said “that they thought that they were taking part in military exercises”…

Soldiers arrested during a failed coup attempt in Turkey told interrogators that they thought that they were taking part in military exercises.

A group of 678 troops and 10 officers, headed by a colonel, was detained by authorities at Ataturk International Airport overnight.

During the interrogations, some of the soldiers claimed that, initially, they had no idea that they were taking part in an attempt to topple the government, thinking that it was just a military drill.

“Only when people began to climb on the tanks, we understood everything,” the soldiers said, according to Hurriyet newspaper.

If this is true, then the soldiers were just as surprised as everyone else.

To me, this whole thing stinks.  Either it was the worst military coup that I have ever seen in my lifetime, or it was a giant theater production.

In any event, President Erdogan is taking full advantage of it.  His popularity in Turkey is now off the charts, and he is going to have power to do virtually anything he wants at this point…

Still, the coup appears to have boosted Erdogan’s popularity. Clapping, singing and dancing, thousands of government backers celebrated the defeat of the coup in public squares in Ankara and Istanbul into the wee hours Sunday, bolstering support for the man who’s led Turkey for over 13 years.

Erdogan’s survival has turned him into a “sort of a mythical figure” and could further erode democracy in Turkey, said Soner Cagaptay, director of the Turkish research program at The Washington Institute.

In public remarks, Erdogan described the coup as “a gift from God”, and he has spoken of the need to “cleanse” the government and the military.  So far since the end of the “coup”, approximately 6,000 officials have already been rounded up…

Turkey widened a crackdown on suspected supporters of a failed military coup on Sunday, taking the number of people rounded up in the armed forces and judiciary to 6,000, and the government said it was in control of the country and economy.

Supporters of President Tayyip Erdogan gathered in front of his Istanbul home to call for the plotters to face the death penalty, which Turkey outlawed in 2004 as part of its efforts to join the European Union.

“We cannot ignore this demand,” Erdogan told the chanting crowd. “In democracies, whatever the people say has to happen.”

This number includes at least 2,745 judges.  I don’t even know that it is possible to put together a list of specific judges that you want to target that is that long in just a couple of days.  Obviously this was a list that someone had developed before the “coup” ever took place, and now this “coup” has handed Erdogan the perfect opportunity to round them all up.

And you may have heard tales of what goes on in Turkish prisons.  The Turks are known for being absolutely brutal, and many of those that have been rounded up are already paying a tremendous price…

Pictures on social media showed detained soldiers stripped from the waist up, some wearing only their underpants, handcuffed and lying packed together on the floor of a sports hall where they were being held in Ankara.

One video on Twitter showed detained generals with bruises and bandages.

As for Erdogan, this is just par for the course.  Those that follow Turkey closely know that he has already been acting like a modern day version of Adolf Hitler for years.  The following comes from Ralph Peters…

Key opposition figures have been driven into exile or banned.  Opposition parties have been suppressed.  Recent elections have not been held so much as staged.  And Erdogan has torn the fresh scab from the Kurdish wound, fostering civil war in Turkey’s southeast for his own political advantage.

Erdogan has packed Turkey’s courts with Islamists.  He appointed pliant, pro-Islamist generals and admirals, while staging show trials of those of whom he wished to rid the country.  He has de facto, if not yet de jure, curtailed women’s freedoms.  He dissolved the wall between mosque and state (Friday night, he used mosques’ loudspeakers to call his supporters into the streets).  Not least, he had long allowed foreign fighters to transit Turkey to join ISIS and has aggressively backed other extremists whom he believed he could manage.

At this point, there is essentially nothing standing in the way of Turkey becoming a radical Islamic dictatorship.  Anyone that dares to be critical of Erdogan is dealt with ruthlessly.  In fact, 1,845 “journalists, writers and critics” have been arrested for “insulting the president” since 2014 alone.

Yes, that is actually a crime in Turkey.

Erdogan envisions himself as the one that will recapture the glory of the old Ottoman Empire, and to show how great he is, he had the largest presidential palace in the entire world built for himself.  If you can believe it, it is actually 30 times larger than the White House…

The £400 million palace of Turkey’s President Erdogan is the biggest in the world. It is also a monstrosity. Thirty times the size of the White House, all the seats of government of Turkey’s Nato allies could be contained inside its vast marble halls and endless corridors.

Just who in the world does this guy think that he is, and what does he have planned next?

Unfortunately for the people of Turkey, they are not going to get rid of this dictator any time soon, and he is going to take them much farther down the road toward becoming a truly radical Islamic state.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on July 18, 2016, 07:30:37 pm
EU official: Turkey prepared arrest lists before failed coup

The EU commissioner dealing with Turkey’s long-stalled bid for membership of the bloc said it appeared that the Turkish government had already prepared before the coup a list of people to be rounded up. “I mean, (that) the lists are available already after the event indicates that this was prepared and at a certain moment should be used,”   


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on July 19, 2016, 05:16:01 pm
The Hydrogen Bombs in Turkey:Among the many questions still unanswered following Friday's coup attempt in Turkey is one that has national-security implications for the United States and for the rest of the world: How secure are the American hydrogen bombs


After the Coup, Turkey Turns Against America


Turks blockade U.S. nuke base: American airmen without electricity and water


Erdogan: Friend of ISIS and Obama:While the Muslim Brotherhood is banned from many Middle East countries, our president has filled our State Department and DHS with MB members.


Erdogan wants to be ‘sultan of Islamic state,’ former model-turned-fighter tells RT


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 21, 2016, 02:49:10 pm

Turkey Suspends Human Rights As Erdogan Jockeys To Become Supreme Dictator

Turkish lawmakers declared a three-month state of emergency Thursday, overwhelmingly approving President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's request for sweeping new powers to expand a government crackdown after last week's attempt military coup.


Turkey said on Thursday it would suspend the European Convention on Human Rights during a state of emergency it declared to pursue the plotters of last week’s failed coup.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Students of history will immediately recognize Erdogan’s bold power play as being right in line with Adolf Hitler’s burning of the Reichstag Building and the passing of the Enabling Act in 1933. Hitler, as we have previously shown you, was a perfect type of the Antichrist. Erdogan is following right in his footsteps, funny how history repeats itself.

Turkish lawmakers declared a three-month state of emergency Thursday, overwhelmingly approving President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s request for sweeping new powers to expand a government crackdown after last week’s attempt military coup.

Parliament voted 346-115 to approve the national state of emergency, which will give Erdogan the authority to extend detention times for suspects and issue decrees that have the force of law without parliamentary approval, among other powers.

“Turkey will suspend the European Convention on Human Rights insofar as it does not conflict with its international obligations,” Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus was quoted as saying by the state-run Anadolu news agency.

Kurtulmus said Turkey would take the step “just like France has done under Article 15 of the convention,” which allows signatory states to derogate certain rights during times of war or major public emergency.

Article 15 allows contracting states to derogate from certain rights guaranteed by the Convention in time of “war or other public emergency threatening the life of the nation”. Permissible derogations under article 15 must meet three substantive conditions:
1.there must be a public emergency threatening the life of the nation;
2.any measures taken in response must be “strictly required by the exigencies of the situation”, and
3.the measures taken in response to it, must be in compliance with a state’s other obligations under international law

He said that the state of emergency “does not contradict the European Convention on Human Rights.”

Article 15 and other international rights treaties allow governments to restrict certain rights, including freedom of movement, expression and association during states of emergency.

However, the article stipulates that measures must be strictly proportionate and not discriminate against people based on ethnicity, religion or social group.

Kurtulmus also said the state of emergency may only last up to 45 days, despite being initially declared for a three-month span.

“We want to end the state of emergency as soon as possible,” Kurtulmus said in quotes carried by private NTV television.

Turkey imposed the special measure as it presses ahead with a crackdown on suspects accused of staging last Friday’s failed coup, blamed by the government on supporters of US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen.

Kurtulmus insisted that no steps would be taken to restrict basic rights and freedoms, telling journalists that “the decision on the state of emergency is aimed at cleansing the state of the gang” of conspirators. source

Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on July 22, 2016, 02:24:19 pm
Erdogan vows Turkish military shake-up as emergency rule takes hold

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan vowed on Thursday to restructure the military and give it "fresh blood" as emergency rule took hold across the NATO member country after last week's attempted coup. Erdogan's comments...came as Turkey sought to assure its citizens and the outside world that the government was not turning its back on democracy and returning to the harsh repression of past regimes.   


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on July 23, 2016, 04:48:57 pm

In a new tactic against suspected coup plotters, Turkey on Saturday announced it had seized more than 2,250 social, educational or health care institutions and facilities that it claims pose a threat to national security.

The health ministry said patients at hospitals that are being seized will be transferred to state hospitals, highlighting the sweeping impact of the government's crackdown after a failed July 15 coup attempt.

A top Turkish official also accused some European countries of downplaying the grave danger posed by the failed insurrection, an apparent response to Western concerns about possible human rights violations in the government's crackdown.

"Some European colleagues think this is a Pokemon game, this coup attempt," said Omer Celik Turkey's minister for EU affairs. "Come here and see how serious this is. This is not something we play in a virtual game. This is happening in real time in Turkey."

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also sharply criticized concerns that the large-scale purges, which have left at least 10,000 people in jail and about 50,000 fired or suspended, could jeopardize basic freedoms. Erdogan told France 24 on Saturday that Turkey has no choice but to impose stringent security measures, after the attempted coup that killed about 290 people and was put down by loyalist forces and protesters.

"We are duty-bound to take these measures. Our Western friends fail to see it that way. I cannot understand why," Erdogan said. "I'm under the impression that they will only see that once all the political leaders of Turkey are killed, and then they'll start to dance for joy."

Turkey has imposed a three-month state of emergency and detained or dismissed tens of thousands of people in the military, the judiciary, the education system and other institutions. Turkish leaders allege that supporters of a U.S.-based cleric, Fethullah Gulen, infiltrated state agencies and groomed loyalists in a vast network of private schools as part of an elaborate, long-term plan to take over the country.

Gulen, a critic and former ally of Erdogan, has denied any knowledge of the attempted coup.

Turkish officials say they will respect the rule of law during the state of emergency, although some commentators have wondered whether the purges are targeting opponents of Erdogan who had nothing to do with the coup.

The Turkish treasury and a state agency that regulates foundations have taken over more than 1,200 foundations and associations, about 1,000 private educational institutions and student dormitories, 35 health care institutions, 19 labor groups and 15 universities, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported Saturday.

Those institutions "belong to, have ties with or are in communication with" the Gulen movement, according to a decree published Saturday in Turkey's official gazette.

Turkey has criticized the United States for not immediately handing over the cleric for prosecution. President Barack Obama says there is a legal process for extradition and has encouraged Turkey to present whatever evidence it has against Gulen.

Turkish judges, military personnel, prosecutors and other civil servants who have been dismissed will lose any gun and pilot licenses and will have to vacate any publicly funded residences where they live within 15 days, according to the decree. Those dismissed cannot work in the public sector and cannot work for private security firms.

The decree also extended the period that suspects can be detained without charge up to 30 days. All detainees' communications with their lawyers can be monitored upon order of the public prosecutor's office.

Also Saturday, newly released video from the night of the coup attempt shows renegade soldiers arriving at an Istanbul social club and rounding up top air force commanders attending the wedding ceremony of a commander's daughter.

The video, released by police and broadcast by Turkish media, shows soldiers ushering men in suits, some of them with their hands bound, around a club area. At one point, two detainees sit in armchairs as a soldier in full combat gear walks over and drinks from a glass.

The commanders, including air force chief Gen. Abidin Unal, were removed by helicopter and later released when the coup attempt collapsed, according to Turkish media reports.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on August 02, 2016, 12:06:41 am
Christians' Future Uncertain as Islam Tightens Its Grip on Turkey

Some warn that Turkey is on its way to becoming an Islamic republic like Iran. Recent developments put Christians there at even greater risk.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is using the failed July 15 coup to reshape Turkey in his image. Some say it looks like a reboot of the old Muslim Ottoman Empire and a de facto dictatorship built around the immensely popular leader.

In what Amnesty International has labeled a "brutal backlash" against enemies real or imagined, Erdogan has detained over 15,000 people, arrested 8,000, and dismissed 60,000 civil servants.

In a speech to his followers last week, Erdogan, sounding more like a sultan than the president of a democracy, said,  "For one time only, I will be forgiving those who disrespected me and insulted me in any way and will be withdrawing all charges against them."

If Turkey is turning into an Islamic dictatorship, Christians will face increased persecution. Protestants in Turkey are already not allowed to build churches and must call them "associations."

Some churches were attacked after the coup attempt, which some viewed as a move against Turkey's Islamization. Once home to as many as 2 million Christians, there may be as few as 120,000 left in Turkey. There are even new concerns that the ancient Byzantine church, the Hagia Sophia, will be turned into a mosque.

America's Incirlik airbase is also at risk from rising Islamism and new tension with the United States. At a recent protest outside the base, the leader accused the U.S. of attacking "Muslim nations."

The failed coup has created a breach in relations with Turkey's Western allies, who fear they are watching Turkey slide into a dictatorship. A defiant Erdogan said relations with the West will continue, "but they have no place in our hearts."


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on August 16, 2016, 05:59:02 pm
US Group Says Nukes At Incirlik Air Base At Risk of Seizure by Turkey Government

A Washington DC think tank says nuclear weapons held at a US air base in Turkey are at high risk of being seized by the Ankara government.

A Washington DC think tank has warned in a new report that American nuclear weapons stored at the Incirlik air base in southeastern Turkey are at risk of being seized by the Ankara government.

That is the conclusion reached by the Stimson Center, a nonpartisan Washington DC think tank dedicated to promoting “global peace and economic prosperity.”

The claim was made in a report issued by the group on Monday, entitled “B61 Life Extension Program: Costs and Policy Consideration.”

“Whether the U.S. could have maintained control of the weapons in the event of a protracted civil conflict in Turkey is an unanswerable question,” the center maintained in its report.

According to co-author Lacie Heeley, “it’s a roll of the dice to continue to have approximately 50 of America’s nuclear weapons stationed at Incirlik Air Base in Turkey.

“There are significant safeguards in place… But safeguards are just that, they don’t eliminate risk,” she told the AFP news agency. “In the event of a coup, we can’t say for certain that we would have been able to maintain control.”

In response, the Pentagon said in a statement, “We do not discuss the location of strategic assets. “The [Department of Defense] has taken appropriate steps to maintain the safety and security of our personnel, their families, and our facilities, and we will continue to do so.”

Thousands of members of the judiciary, police and military have been arrested in an ongoing purge taking place in the wake of a failed coup attempt in Turkey last month.

The government is also continuing its media crackdown on news outlets that appear to be critical of its policies in any way.

Authorities ordered the closing of 45 newspapers, 23 radio stations, 16 television channels and three news agencies this month. Arrest warrants were issued for 47 former employees and executives of Zaman, a media group accused of links to Fethullah Gulen, an elderly Turkish Islamic cleric in self-imposed exile in the United States.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on October 29, 2016, 05:49:58 pm

The State Department is ordering family members of employees posted to the U.S. Consulate General in Istanbul to leave because of security concerns.

In a statement issued Saturday, the State Department says the decision is based on security information indicating extremist groups are continuing aggressive efforts to attack U.S. citizens in areas of Istanbul where they reside or frequent.

The Consulate General remains open and fully staffed. The order applies only to the U.S. Consulate General in Istanbul, not to other U.S. diplomatic posts in Turkey.

The travel warning issued Saturday updates a warning last week of increased threats from terrorist groups throughout Turkey. U.S. citizens were advised to avoid travel to southeast Turkey and carefully consider the risks of travel to and throughout the country.

The State Department said international and indigenous terrorist organizations in Turkey have been targeting U.S. as well as other foreign tourists.

Anti-American sentiment runs high in Turkey despite its status as a NATO ally and a member of the anti-ISIS coalition.

In addition to the terrorist threat, friction between Washington and Ankara has increased since a failed July coup in Turkey, which Turkish officials blame on a U.S.-based cleric who lives in self-exile in Pennsylvania. Turkey has requested his extradition, but the U.S. has yet to make a decision.


Title: Re: Turkey anti-government protests
Post by: Mark on April 27, 2018, 12:46:23 am
World War 3: Turkey’s Erdogan calls for ‘ARMY of Islam’ to ATTACK Israel on all sides

URKEY’S President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) have announced they want to create an “army of Islam” to wage war against Israel, it has been revealed.

Less than a month ago the Turkish state’s mouthpiece the daily Yeni Şafak ran an article for Erdogan titled “A call for urgent action” and on the newspaper’s website headlined “What if an army of Islam formed against Israel?”

It called for the 57 member states of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to form a joint army to simultaneously attack Israel from all sides.

The article said: “If the member states of the OIC unite militarily, they will form the world’s largest and most comprehensive army.

“The number of active soldiers would be at least 5,206,100, while the defence budget would reach approximately $175billion (£124billion).”

This was accompanied by an interactive map providing formation of military forces for a joint Muslim attack on Israel.

The article provided additional details of the plan, saying: “It is expected that 250,000 soldiers will participate in the first of a possible operation.

“Land, air and naval bases of member states located in the most critical regions will be used.

“Joint bases will be constructed in a short period of time… It is possible for 500 tanks and armoured vehicles, 100 planes and 500 attack helicopters and 50 ships to mobilise quickly.”

Erdogan did not deny his support for the report and has on several occasions said he would like to resurrect the Ottoman Empire.

The tyrant has established military bases in Qatar and Somalia and recently reached an agreement with Sudan to acquire a Sudanese island in the Red Sea to be used as a military base.

He has also repeatedly threatened to invade Greek islands in the Mediterranean and has recently invaded Syria under the pretext of fighting Kurdish terrorism.

Erdogan has also locked up journalists and activists who have spoken out against his regime.

But the European Union is urging members to approve a further €3.7billion (£3.28billion) to help Turkey deal with Syrian refugees who arrived in their country.

Brussels will now push to get Turkey the extra €2.7 billion (£2.4billion) from national governments, some of whom may be unwilling to pump new cash into the country.

Europe’s relations with Erdogan has been fraught in recent years but the EU depends on Turkey to keep a tight lid on immigration from the Middle East, where the war in Syria has killed hundreds of thousands and pushed millions from homes.