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Turkey anti-government protests

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September 24, 2017, 10:45:16 pm Psalm 51:17 says: The specific rule pertaining to the national anthem is found on pages A62-63 of the league rulebook. It states: “The National Anthem must be played prior to every NFL game, and all players must be on the sideline for the National Anthem. “During the National Anthem, players on the field and bench area should stand at attention, face the flag, hold helmets in their left hand, and refrain from talking. The home team should ensure that the American flag is in good condition. It should be pointed out to players and coaches that we continue to be judged by the public in this area of respect for the flag and our country. Failure to be on the field by the start of the National Anthem may result in discipline, such as fines, suspensions, and/or the forfeiture of draft choice(s) for violations of the above, including first offenses.”
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http://www.naturalnews.com/2017-08-11-new-fda-approved-hepatitis-b-vaccine-found-to-increase-heart-attack-risk-by-700.html
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Exodus 20:5  Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
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Author Topic: Turkey anti-government protests  (Read 1024 times)
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« 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."

http://edition.cnn.com/2013/06/01/world/europe/turkey-protests/index.html?hpt=hp_t1
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« Reply #1 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."
 

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4386917,00.html
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« Reply #2 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
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/ministry-to-take-action-against-police-officers-who-used-tear-gas-abusively.aspx?pageID=238&nID=48024&NewsCatID=338

Istanbul protesters declare 'victory' after police pull out of Taksim Square - @AFP
http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/06/01/turkish-pm-urges-end-to-istanbul-protests-as-police-pull-out/


Amnesty International calls for action in Turkey as reports of alleged police brutality continue - @AJELive
http://blogs.aljazeera.com/topic/turkey-elections/rights-group-calls-drastic-action-turkey

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
http://blogs.aljazeera.com/topic/turkey-protests/protesters-only-200-metres-away-pms-office-istanbul

http://www.breakingnews.com/topic/turkey-anti-government-protests
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« Reply #3 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.

http://www.arabnews.com/news/453667
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« Reply #4 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

Europe01.06.2013
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

http://en.europeonline-magazine.eu/3rd-lead-police-step-up-attacks-on-protesters-in-turkeyeds-updates-with-erdogan-quote-gul-statement-epa-photos_283901.html
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« Reply #5 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.

http://www.debka.com/newsupdatepopup/4577/
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« Reply #6 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.

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/main-opposition-leader-calls-on-erdogan-to-apologize-people.aspx?pageID=238&nID=48034&NewsCatID=338
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« Reply #7 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.

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/europe/2013/06/201362115317560971.html?utm
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« Reply #8 on: June 02, 2013, 11:54:13 am »

More than 1,700 arrested in Turkey protests; most of arrested released, minister says - @AFP

http://au.news.yahoo.com/latest/a/-/latest/17447074/protesters-occupy-istanbul-square-as-1-700-held/

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

http://www.breakingnews.com/topic/turkey-anti-government-protests
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« Reply #9 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.

http://www.businessweek.com/ap/2013-06-02/protest-subsides-at-istanbul-square
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« Reply #10 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.

Quote
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/
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« Reply #11 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.

Quote
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.”

!
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« Reply #12 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

http://www.breakingnews.com/topic/turkey-anti-government-protests


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".

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-22753418


UPDATE 2-Turkish markets tumble as protests unsettle investors
http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/03/markets-turkey-idUSL5N0EF11E20130603

Erdogan maintains hard stance on protests
http://www.chron.com/news/world/article/Erdogan-maintains-hard-stance-on-protests-4570672.php

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« Reply #13 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
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« Reply #14 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.

http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/06/02/3429907/us-asks-parties-in-turkey-to-calm.html
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« Reply #15 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.

'Extremists'
 
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

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-22753418
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« Reply #16 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.

"SERVANT OF THE NATION"

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.

POLARIZING RHETORIC

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."

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/03/us-turkey-protests-erdogan-idUSBRE95215720130603
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« Reply #17 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."

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/06/04/turkey-protests-islamist-pattern/2386287/
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« Reply #18 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.


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/turkey/10097368/Turkey-protests-second-fatality-reported-as-widespread-civil-unrest-continues.html


Turkish gov't offers apology as protests continue
http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/E/EU_TURKEY_PROTEST?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2013-06-04-06-06-23


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.

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/europe/2013/06/20136464616805636.html


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.

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2013/06/04/world/europe/04reuters-turkey-protests.html?_r=0
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« Reply #19 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.
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« Reply #20 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.
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« Reply #21 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.

ANGER BOILS OVER

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.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/08/us-turkey-protests-idUSBRE94U0J920130608
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« Reply #22 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.

http://blogs.aljazeera.com/topic/turkey-protests/mayor-istanbul-plans-build-replica-former-ottoman-barracks-where-gezi-park
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« Reply #23 on: June 08, 2013, 10:39:57 pm »

http://news.yahoo.com/egypts-islamists-opposition-closely-eye-turkey-203004485.html
Egypt's Islamists, opposition closely eye Turkey
6/8/13

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.
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« Reply #24 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.

http://www.reuters.com/assets/print?aid=USBRE94U0J920130609
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« Reply #25 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.
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« Reply #26 on: June 11, 2013, 01:19:06 pm »

http://news.yahoo.com/photos/clashes-in-turkey-slideshow/
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)

6/11/13



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)
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« Reply #27 on: June 11, 2013, 01:56:52 pm »

It's starting to look like Syria.
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« Reply #28 on: June 11, 2013, 06:55:07 pm »

Riot Police Roll Into Disputed Square in Istanbul...
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/12/world/europe/disputed-square-in-istanbul-turkey.html?partner=MYWAY&ei=5065

Rubber Bullets, Water Cannons...
http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/E/EU_TURKEY_PROTESTS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2013-06-11-08-11-53

PM: 'No more tolerance'...
http://news.sky.com/story/1102025/turkey-protests-riot-police-clash-with-activists

'Massive clouds of tear gas'...
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324634304578538450169091828.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_LEFTTopStories
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« Reply #29 on: June 11, 2013, 07:27:39 pm »

This has gotten almost 24/7 coverage on the MSM today.
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