Istanbul: park protest ended by riot police

  • It took the riot police of Turkey 30-odd minutes to clear protesters from the Gazi Park in Taksim Square, Istanbul. They used water cannons and tear gas to disperse the people who had been sitting there for 18 days and giving the strongest challenge ever to the 10-year regime of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the incumbent Prime Minister of Turkey.

    The protest had started off as an environmental one against a developmental project that was supposed to be executed over there, but it quickly spread its roots to many other cities in the Eurasian country. Soon, it assumed massive proportions with increased expression of disenchantment with the current administration.

    The major problem of people with Erdogan is that he is gradually becoming more authoritarian in his decisions. He has, however, strongly denied the accusations stating that he has a solid base of support and it is this admiration that has helped him win for the third straight time in 2011 with 50 per cent votes. In the aforementioned protests, a minimum of 4 people have lost their lives and in excess of 5000 people have been injured. These incidents have also taken a toll on the international reputation of the Turkish premier as well. This defiance towards his administration has been a new phenomenon and he has been fairly peeved about it.