Tuesday 26 September 2017

Defiant Erdogan issues 'final warning' to protesters

Protesters dance in Gezi park in Istanbul's Taksim square
Protesters dance in Gezi park in Istanbul's Taksim square

Justin Vela Ankara

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has issued what he said was a final warning to anti-government protesters in Istanbul's Taksim Square.

Police briefly cleared the protesters from the square on Tuesday, but they have since returned.

They are also occupying the adjacent Gezi Park, which they want to save from being bulldozed so the government can rebuild an Ottoman-era military barracks. But the demonstrations have developed into an outpouring of anger against Mr Erdogan.

"This square belongs to the people of Istanbul, the people of the whole country, and to all international visitors," the prime minister said. "So we cannot allow lawbreakers to hang around freely in this square. We will clean the square."

Defiant demonstrators were planning last night to hold a piano concert in the square, even though hundreds of riot police were positioned nearby. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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