Tag Archive: Taksim Square

Taksim Square


An RT crew has been caught up in tear gas while reporting on a mass anti-government rally in Istanbul’s Taksim Square. Police have started dispersing the protesters, reports RT’s Sarah Firth.

Clashes started at around 17:30 GMT on Friday, with police using water cannons to disperse the crowd which gathered to voice their anger against the government’s actions, Firth reports from the site. This comes amid an ongoing high-profile corruption scandal. [Read the full article]



Middle east map


CIA Supplying Weapons To Syrian Rebel Groups Legally Classified As Terrorists By The U.S. | Opposing Views


The U.S. military’s involvement (or lack thereof) in the Syrian civil war that has been taking place over the past few years has been a point of contention both within the U.S. and around the world. After a chemical attack killed and injured thousands, the debate as to whether or not the Obama administration would respond with a military strike dominated discussion within the U.S. and the U.N. governing bodies.

Before the extended debate surrounding that issue took place, the United States government had approved the CIA to begin delivering weapons to Syrian rebels. After a few months of delay following the Syrian chemical attack, the shipments of those weapons recently began. The arms sent to the country include light weaponry that can be tracked by the United States. [Read the full article]


Is a Third Intifada in the offing? | Al Jazeera


Hebron, Occupied West Bank – The recent killing of two Israeli soldiers has broken a relative calm in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, and some observers say the incidents could be a prelude to yet another Palestinian uprising.

One of the soldiers was killed September 21 near the northern West Bank town of Kalkilya, and the Israeli army arrested a Palestinian suspect shortly afterward. The perpetrator reportedly confessed to having killed the soldier with the intention of exchanging his body for his brother, who is serving a lengthy prison sentence in an Israeli jail. [Read the full article]


Gezi Park and Taksim Square: Reflections and Reactions | Social Resistance


Courage, bravery, comradeship, solidarity, youth, tear gas, riot police, batons, shields, gas masks and water cannon, death, blinding, euphoria, intimidation, more courage, fatigue, exhilaration, the smell of tear gas, stinging and burning, eyes watering, running from the police charge, indiscriminate police violence, chemically modified caustic water from water cannon, mass demonstrations, unity in opposition, albeit temporary,  spontaneity yet with organisation, hope but despair, then hope again, the repressive state apparatuses and the ideological state apparatuses in the service of AKP and sections of Turkish Capital, transnational and national Capital in its brutal nakedness- the combined brutality of neoliberal immiseration and brute force. And Erdogan’s astonishment. And the disbelief mong oppressors and oppressed. And astonishment through the globe. At the global revelation of Capitalist brutality in Turkey, at the global understanding of Erdogan’s conservative anti-secular Islamicisation of society and education in Turkey. The neoliberal-Islamic conservative nexus. Of secularists and socialists under siege, of liberals and Labour labelled as `the enemy’, of workers and trade unionists trampled and imprisoned, of peaceful demonstrators demonised and detained. While the world looked on in amazement. And laughed at the idolatry of the new Sultan, Erdogan, lauded by his supine media and ministers. And at Erdogan’s flailing depictions of the protestors as ` internal traitors and external collaborators’.  And realised the laughter was hollow when the global screens showed the blood, the dignity, the solidarity, the youth, the justice of the protesters, the two week long peaceful commune that had been Gezi. [Read the full article]


God is everywhere in Egypt | LA Times


CAIRO — In politically fractured Egypt, there’s one belief that almost every faction seems to hold in common: God is on our side. (And not, therefore, on yours.)

Egypt’s social and cultural mix is hieroglyphic in its complexity: Islamists, progressives, conservatives, and those marching in lock step with the powerful military. But in the Arab world’s most populous and influential country, the many guises of piety are rarely absent from discourse. [Read the full article]


Mikati stresses Lebanon ‘won’t close door in Syrians’ faces’ – but cash is questionable | Euronews


Since the start of the serious violence in Syria, the country that has felt the most direct practical impact has been neighbouring Lebanon. The consequences of the crisis have been political, economic and social. In Beirut, pressures linked to Syria prompted Najib Mikati to resign as prime minister, but he has remained in a caretaker capacity.

As preparations continue for a new government to be formed, Daleen Hassan went to speak with him. [Read the full article]


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Middle east mapIn the Wake of Clashes, Some Egyptians Lose Faith in the Armed Forces | The Atlantic

CAIRO — When General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, head of Egypt’s armed forces, called for the military’s supporters to take to the streets on Friday and provide him with “a mandate to confront possible violence and terrorism,” unrest seemed inevitable.

Hundreds of thousands of protesters heeded Sisi’s call, converging on Cairo’s Tahrir Square, waving Egyptian flags, clambering on tanks for photo opportunities, and cheering wildly when military helicopters buzzed the crowd. [Read the full article]

Egypt restores feared secret police units | The Guardian

Egypt’s interim government was accused of attempting to return the country to the Mubarak era on Monday, after the country’s interior ministry announced the resurrection of several controversial police units that were nominally shut down following the country’s 2011 uprising and the interim prime minister was given the power to place the country in a state of emergency.

Egypt’s state security investigations service, Mabahith Amn ad-Dawla, a wing of the police force under President Mubarak, and a symbol of police oppression, was supposedly closed in March 2011 – along with several units within it that investigated Islamist groups and opposition activists. The new national security service (NSS) was established in its place. [Read the full article]

Defiant Pro-Morsi Egyptians Ignore Military Threats, Stage Mass Rallies | ABC News

Supporters of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi expressed defiance after the deadliest weekend since Morsi was ousted July 3. Raising the prospect of another bloody confrontation, the Muslim Brotherhood has called for mass rallies this week after the military-backed civilian government threatened to clear the protesters off the streets.

Thousands of Morsi supporters marched early this morning from Cairo’s Nasr City, where they have been camped out for weeks in protest, toward Cairo’s military intelligence headquarters despite an explicit warning from the army to stay away. [Read the full article]

Egypt braces for further unrest after calls for fresh protests | ABC Australia

Egypt is bracing for more bloodshed after supporters of Egypt’s ousted president called for new protests, threatening to deepen the country’s political crisis.

The Anti-Coup Alliance of Islamist groups organising protests against the ouster of president Mohamed Morsi urged demonstrators to march on security buildings on Monday night and called a million-man march for Tuesday. [Read the full article]

The Morning After Egypt’s Rabaa Massacre | The Daily Beast

Powerful army chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi showed up smiling at a broadcasted national police academy graduation on Sunday, less than 24 hours after at least 72 pro-Morsi protesters were shot to death by Egyptian security forces. Instead of being criticized for what the Muslim Brotherhood and some in the international community have deemed a massacre, Sisi was honored with a standing ovation. Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim referred to the general as “Egypt’s devoted son,” promising a cheering crowd that he would accept “the people’s mandate” to fight terrorism in a military-led “new dawn.” [Read the full article]

Inventing Settlers to Scuttle Peace Talks | The Daily Beast

Demography denial, as I wrote here recently, is in fashion on the Israeli right. Faced with the argument that Israel can’t rule over a large, disenfranchised Palestinian population and claim to be a democracy, the right’s Alliance of Wishful Thinking invents smaller population figures and declares that—hooray!—Israel can annex the West Bank and maintain a Jewish majority. Inside the separate universe of the right, the numbers are responsively repeated until everyone knows they’re true. [Read the full article]

Iraq car bombs kill 55 in Shia neighbourhood attacks | CBC

More than a dozen car bombs ripped through marketplaces, parking lots and rush-hour crowds in Iraq today, killing at least 55 people and pushing the country’s death toll for July’s surge of attacks toward the 700 mark, officials said.

The blasts — 17 in all — are part of wave of bloodshed that has swept across the country since April, killing more than 3,000 people and worsening already strained ties between Iraq’s Sunni minority and Shia-led government. The scale and pace of the violence, unseen since the darkest days of the country’s insurgency, have fanned fears of a return to the widespread sectarian bloodletting that pushed Iraq to the brink of civil war after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion. [Read the full article]

Israeli officials promise public referendum on any peace agreement | PRI

Israeli and Palestinian officials haven’t even begun formal peace talks and already national leaders are trying to shirk responsibility. Israel’s prime minister has said even if an agreement in reached through negotiation, it would be subject to an unprecedented referendum by the Israeli people.

The Israelis and the Palestinians are finally going to talk peace again for the first time in years. [Read the full article]

Turkey: the quality of democracy | Osservatorio balcani e caucaso

The “Gezi Park” protests enabled many to experience, often for the first time, the value of direct action and participation. A process that will have lasting consequences on the relationship between citizens and power. Our interview to professor Kerem Öktem

Among the issues at the root of the protests erupted in Taksim Square, you recently highlighted an increasingly problematic Turkish foreign policy. Does the recent military coup in Egypt reinforce this issue? Is it the end of the great project of the AKP to turn Turkey into a centre of attraction and a model for its neighbours? [Read the full article]

In Turkey’s heartland, support for protest is thin | fdl reporter

CAPPADOCIA, Turkey – In the Anatolian countryside of south-central Turkey, farmers nurture their crops and tend to their animals as they have done for centuries.

Pumpkins lie in the fields ready for their seeds to be harvested – a popular snack in Turkey – while the farmers scatter feed on the brown earth for chickens and cows chewing in a barn nearby. [Read the full article]

Why is Turkey obsessed with Egypt? | Al Arabiya

Since the Egyptian army removed the country’s elected President Mohammed Mursi on July 3, Turkey has been fully preoccupied with every development in the largest Arab nation, thrusting Turkey into the center of Egypt’s contentious politics.

Hashtags condemning the army intervention in Egypt can easily become top trending topics on Twitter and almost daily social media campaigns target the country’s army-backed interim government. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan delivered more a dozen speeches since the ouster of Mursi, doling out criticisms to the army intervention and its supporters and vowing unwavering support for what he says “Egyptian people.” Along with the prime minister, public officials, activists, prominent journalists, religious figures and ordinary Turks joined the chorus to condemn the military in Egypt. [Read the full article]

Syria devastation in pictures: Flattened buildings of Khalidiya as Assad’s army retakes neighbourhood | The Mirror

Battered into the dust by artillery strikes, these devastated buildings are all that remain of a district that Syrian rebels hailed as one of their greatest prizes.

The panicking civilians are long gone. The homes, shops and cafes have been flattened. [Read the full article]

No Safe Places In Syria: Photographer Abducted At Media Center | NPR

We’re catching up with a harrowing story out of Syria about a Polish photographer who was kidnapped last week and is possibly being held for ransom. NPR’s Rima Marrouch sent this report.

Photographer Marcin Suder was staying at a media center in the rebel-held town of Saraqeb in Idlib province when a group of masked men reportedly stormed in Wednesday morning. They beat a Syrian media activist, stole equipment and abducted Suder. [Read the full article]

Kuwait’s emir reappoints PM after election | Reuters

(Reuters) – Kuwait’s ruler reappointed Sheikh Jaber al-Mubarak al-Sabah as prime minister after Saturday’s election in the Gulf state and asked him to form a new cabinet, state news agency KUNA said on Monday.

Sheikh Jaber, who has held the post since late 2011, will now form a new government of around 15 ministers, with top posts expected to go to members of the ruling Al-Sabah family. [Read the full article]

Yoohoo! Another investigation turns up taxpayer waste in Afghanistan | CS Monitor

Today, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) reports that a $47 million US government stability program failed to bring any stability.

Last week, SIGAR reported that millions of dollars given to Afghan contractors to place grates over culverts to prevent explosives being hidden inside of them were misspent, likely leading to the deaths of US and other forces when grates were either not installed or installed improperly. At the end of June, SIGAR reported that the Pentagon was moving forward with a $772 million purchase of aircraft for the Afghan military “even though the Afghans lack the capacity to operate and maintain them.” [Read the full article]

Afghan women’s rights at risk in peace process: UN watchdog | The Raw Story

GENEVA (Reuters) – Women’s rights in Afghanistan risk being further undermined in the fragile country’s peace process due to entrenched patriarchal attitudes, a United Nations watchdog warned on Monday.

Afghan women have made hard-fought gains in education and work since the collapse of the Taliban government in 2001, but fears are growing these could suffer a reversal when most foreign forces leave by the end of next year. [Read the full article]

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Mariano Rajoy en Bilbao. Imagen tomada por Ike...

Mariano Rajoy en Bilbao. Imagen tomada por Iker Parriza (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Thousands of protesters demanding the resignation of Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy over a corruption scandal have clashed with police in the capital, Madrid.

Several people were injured or arrested after the protest turned violent towards midnight on Thursday. [Read the full article]

Istanbul Taksim Square

Istanbul Taksim Square (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Turkish police fire tear gas at Istanbul protesters | Reuters


(Reuters) – Turkish police fired water cannon and tear gas on Saturday to disperse hundreds of protesters who gathered to march to Gezi Park, which has been at the heart of fierce unrest against Prime Minister Erdogan’s rule.

Protesters scattered, running into sidestreets where police pursued them, before starting to regroup on Istiklal Street, meters from the main Taksim Square. [Read the full article]



Turkey: Gezi Park Clashes | euronews


Hundreds of protesters gathered in Istanbul on Saturday to march to Gezi Park. They’ve been protesting against a recently imposed law. It blocks the Turkish Engineers and Architects Union from approving urban planning projects. The law is seen by many as part of a government vendetta.

The union previously brought a lawsuit over plans to develop Gezi Park, prompting the first protests against Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan. [Read the full article]



Fresh protests hit Turkey | Malta Today


Turkish police have used water cannon and tear gas against anti-government rallies in several cities, with protesters using social media to report numerous injuries.

Saturday’s clashes occurred in Istanbul, Ankara and Hatay. Police fired rubber bullets on demonstrators in Istanbul. [Read the full article]




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Istanbul Taksim Square

Istanbul Taksim Square (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Police stops journalists’ march to Taksim Square | Press TV

As hundreds of journalists had taken to the streets to protest the curbs on media freedom in Turkey, riot police intervened and prevented them from entering the Taksim Square. So the protesters staged a sit-in on Istiklal Street, which leads to the square.

The journalists’ protest was a show of solidarity with several Turkish journalists who have either quit or lost their jobs during the weeks of anti-government protests. They also wanted about 70 of their imprisoned colleagues to be freed. [Read the full article]

Gezi-related detaiments, releases continue | World Bulletin

A man for whom an İstanbul court issued an arrest warrant on charges of attacking Gezi Park protesters with a machete has allegedly fled to Morocco to escape arrest, Turkish media reported on Friday.

The İstanbul 1st High Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant on Thursday for confessed machete attacker Sabri Çelebi, who was released pending trial on Monday by another İstanbul court, after the İstanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office appealed the decision. [Read the full article]

The Battle over Turkey’s ‘Tahrir Square’ Continues | PJ Media

Gezi Park in Istanbul, from which national demonstrations against Islamist rule began, had been closed since police forcefully evicted the protestors (chapulcular, in Turkish) a couple of weeks ago. The municipality meanwhile quickly moved in, fixed the walls, planted new trees, lots of new flowers, and beautified the park in general.

During those activities the park was closed to the public. When it was all done the governor of Istanbul announced that it would be open to the public again last Sunday. [Read the full article]

I was harassed by police: Leading Gezi activist | Hurriyet

Mücella Yapıcı, the head of the Chamber of Architecture and a leading figure in the Taksim Solidarity Platform, revealed the horrifying procedure of her detention and release while giving her defense testimony at Istanbul’s Çağlayan courthouse.

Yapıcı has been prominent in Turkey’s nationwide Gezi Park protests and was detained along with other members of the Taksim Solidarity Platform on charges of “leading a crime syndicate,” but was released on July 11. [Read the full article]

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English: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister ...

English: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister of Turkey at Çanakkale Türkçe: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Başbakanı (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Opposition divided on Turkish PM’s new charter offer | Hurriyet Daily News

The opposition front has delivered conflicted responses to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s call for immediately submitting to Parliament all 48 articles on which the Constitution Conciliation Commission has reached agreement.

Among the three opposition parties represented at Parliament, the main opposition was skeptical towards Erdoğan’s motives, while another lent a cautious support, and the third is still trying to make up its mind. [Read the full article]

Istanbul police block protest by journalists demanding press freedoms | Fox News

Police have blocked hundreds of journalists from marching in Istanbul to demand press freedoms and denounce the harassment of colleagues during a spate of anti-government demonstrations last month.

Journalists were detained or targeted by police while covering the nearly three weeks of protests, and some who sided with protesters were sacked or resigned. [Read the full article]

Turkish Prime Minister’s power reaches even into daily bread | Digital Journal

Istanbul – As Ramadan continues in Turkey, so do protests that are quickly quelled by the Turkish Prime Minister whose wealth and power reach even into the formula for tasty bread.

Nearly six weeks has passed since the first protests in Istanbul’s Gezi Park. Under the orders of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkish police brutally quelled these protests with water canons and pepper spray. At least five people died, and thousands were injured. Protesters who had set up a tent city in Gezi Park were violently driven out, and nearby Taksim Square was blocked off by the police who regularly raided even tourists in the historic Taksim shopping district. Protests that spread throughout Turkey were often violently opposed, and many protesters were arrested (including doctors and lawyers who helped protesters). A lone man began peacefully standing at Taksim Square when it reopened, and soon standing men and women appeared throughout Turkey in silent protest. [Read the full article]

Turkey Talking a Dangerous Game | WSJ

If in doubt, blame the markets or foreigners—preferably both.

In the time-honored fashion of embattled governments, Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is looking for scapegoats. Mr. Erdogan has long complained an “interest rate lobby” of foreign investors has been conspiring to force Turkey to raise rates. Beset by popular protests and a tumbling lira, that rhetoric has intensified. Now Turkish regulators are probing the recent selloffs of Turkey’s currency and stocks. [Read the full article]

Stand in solidarity with Turkey’s peaceful protesters | indexoncensorship.org

A Turkish student attacked while participating in anti-government protests died Wednesday. Ali İsmail Korkmaz suffered a cerebral haemorrhage after unknown assailants attacked him during a protest in the northwestern city of Eskişehir on 2 June.

Korkmaz is the seventh protester to die since the start of unrest on 28 May, when protesters first rallied against the government’s plan to turn Gezi Park — one of Istanbul’s important green spaces — into a shopping mall. The protest movement quickly snowballed, after police used tear gas to disperse the initial 50 protesters. [Read the full article]

The protest is only the beginning | ipolitics.ca

LONDON — In Brazil, the protesters wore halter tops and shorts. In Egypt, they wore headscarves and long sleeves. In Turkey, they wore more of the former, some of the latter, and quite a bit of face paint as well.

In each of these three places they looked different, used different slogans, spoke different languages. And yet the parallels among these three protest movements on three different continents in three countries run by democratically elected leaders are striking, not least for what they reveal about the nature of the modern street protest. [Read the full article]

Court releases Gezi Park protesters and Taksim Solidarity members charged by prosecutor | Hurriyet Daily News

An Istanbul court has ruled for the release of 12 Gezi protesters, including members of the Taksim Solidarity Platform that pioneered the nationwide demonstrations, who were charged with “forming an illegal group to commit crime” by the prosecutors.

The panel of judges said there was no concrete evidence for the arrest of the five people charged “establishing an illegal organization to commit crime,” including platform spokeswoman Mücella Yapıcı and Istanbul Medical Chamber General Secretary Ali Çerkezoğlu. The other seven protesters charged with “resisting the police” and “violating the demonstration and rally law,” were released for lack of evidence. [Read the full article]

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English: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister ...

English: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister of Turkey at Çanakkale Türkçe: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Başbakanı (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Gezi Park Protests: Is Turkey becoming Egypt? | Juan Cole

On May 31st of this year a protest over the fate of Gezi Park, located near Istanbul’s famous Taksim Square, evolved into a series of broad-based demonstrations against the government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Over the next month protests continued throughout Turkey. Thousands were injured and at least four died. Serious incidents of police violence were documented, and people were detained and interrogated. Smaller protests continue to take place even now and popular opposition to the AKP is more visible than ever before. [Read the full article]

Taksim shopkeepers say protests reduced their sales | WorldBulletin

Gezi Park, which is located in İstanbul’s Taksim Square and has been the subject of nationwide protests, was reopened on Monday, yet store owners in the area say there has been a significant fall in their sales due to the protests.

Store owners and street vendors have complained about the negative effects of the protests on their sales and called on protesters to put an end to the protests. [Read the full article]

Police violence against journalists escalating | Hurriyet Daily News

One of the most infuriating cases regarding the grave list of violations we have come across in the Taksim Gezi park resistance and its aftermath is the violent police practice directly targeting journalists, regardless of whether they are local or international. The widespread use of excessive force against demonstrators is often directed toward journalists.

It is not possible to fit in this column a breakdown of all the victims of police violence, which has caused injuries to scores of our colleagues and which has systematically been going on since May 30 when the incidents first erupted. However, we can say that one of the “peaks” was experienced last Saturday during incidents in Taksim. [Read the full article]

Turkish opposition angry over union vote by gov’t | News Times

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey’s parliament banned a union from approving construction projects, with opposition parties saying Wednesday the group of architects and city planners was being punished by the government for challenging redevelopment plans in Istanbul that ignited nationwide protests last month.

The surprise measure was passed late Tuesday with the votes of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s ruling party, which holds a parliamentary majority. [Read the full article]

Erdogan Plays the Headscarf Card | Al-Monitor

On June 11, nearly two weeks into the mass anti-government protests that were rocking Turkey, the country’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out against the demonstrators yet again. This time, in a fiery speech before lawmakers from his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

In addition to his well-worn tirades about the protesters being “hooligans” and agents of a global conspiracy, he spoke of the plight of a woman who covered her head Islamic style. The woman in question was the daughter-in-law of “one of my very important and close friends,” he told a rapt audience in parliament. “They dragged her on the streets near my office [in Istanbul] and attacked her and her child,” Erdogan thundered but gave no further details, thereby prompting a flurry of excited speculation. [Read the full article]

Protesters reject Erdogan warning | Oman Tribune

ISTANBUL Turkish protesters said on Thursday they would remain in Istanbul’s Gezi Park despite a “last warning” by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to evacuate the green patch at the centre of deadly anti-government unrest.

“We will stay in Gezi Park with all our demands and sleeping bags,” Taksim Solidarity, the core group behind the campaign to save the park, said in a statement, rejecting a government proposal to hold a referendum on the site’s controversial redevelopment. [Read the full article]

Fight for Gezi Park:PM Erdogan takes revenge on rebellious Chamber of Architects | National Turk

The Turkish Chambers of Engineers and Architects are among the biggest critics of the development of Gezi Park in Istanbul. Their umbrella organization TMMOB has repeatedly opposed the plans of the Erdogan government for the area in Taksim Square.

Now the ruling AKP has avenged for the resistance: In a night session Parliament clearly circumcised with the voices of Erdogan’s party late Tuesday night, the rights of the professional associations. The TMMOB should get no more say in future city planning projects. According to the new law, the future has only the Ministry of Environment and Urban Development, the sole authority over such projects. [Read the full article]

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English: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister ...

English: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister of Turkey at Çanakkale Türkçe: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Başbakanı (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Taksim Square’s piano man plays for peace


Davide Martello was on a world tour with his custom-built electric piano when he found himself on Taksim Square. Now he’s become the soundtrack for Turkish protestors and has continued his tour with a new message: peace.


Branded the Piano Man of Taksim Square, Davide Martello went from complete obscurity to a global celebrity overnight, with images of him serenading both protesters and police now emblematic of the conflict between the Turkish people and their government.




Taksim detainees start hunger strike as prosecutor extends detention – report


Around 50 people who were detained because of the Gezi park protests in Istanbul began a hunger strike on Wednesday, as prosecutors extended their detention period and the death toll from the Gezi Park incidents rose to five, Turkish media reported.


The move by prosecutors was met with strong public reaction, with the Taksim Solidarity Platform and other human rights organizations and unions calling for the detainees’ immediate release, Radikal, a Turkish daily, reported.




Two different iftars in Turkey Taksim square


Two leftist Muslim groups hosted fast-breaking iftar dinner in a nearby pedestrian street by the Gezi Park on the first day of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. The local municipality also hosted a dinner in Taksim Square.




Istanbul offers Iftar meal at Taksim Square, protests still going on


Istanbul’s Beyoglu Municipality organized the first Iftar, or fast-breaking meal, of this year at Taksim square on Tuesday, but anti-government protests were still going on around the square.


“It is very rare for the Istanbul government to organize iftar parties at Taksim Square. Usually they are prepared near Blue Mosque, in Uskudar and Fatih districts,” said Nuray Ozgen, a hotel manager.




Understanding Turkish PM Erdogan’s Racist Crack


Every Tuesday, Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan addresses his Justice and Development Party (AKP) cohorts… Criticizing Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of the center-left and secular Republican Peoples Party (CHP), Erdoğan declared, “Kılıçdaroğlu is striving every bit he can to raise himself from the level of a black person to the level of a white man.”




Can Erdogan’s Enemies Kill Him With Their Minds?


Recently, I asked whether Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan believed his own conspiracy theories about the anti-government protests that began in an Istanbul park at the end of May. His appointment this week of a new chief adviser suggests Erdogan may have embraced a dark fantasy world.


The new man with the prime minister’s ear, Yigit Bulut, previously was the editor-in-chief of the television station Kanal 24, and has been a point man for conspiracy theories about the Gezi Park protests. His analysis has included the following interesting ideas:


English: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister ...

English: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister of Turkey at Çanakkale Türkçe: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Başbakanı (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How Turkey’s Leaders Are Exploiting Egypt’s Coup

If you’re reading the American press, you might think that the protests in Turkey have died down. Nothing could be further from the truth. Stranger still, if you are reading the Turkish press, you might conclude that you are in Egypt, because that seems to be the only topic of conversation.

This is why: Conventional wisdom has it that the Egyptian coup was a “nightmare” for Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, putting an end to his ambitious foreign policy fantasies. To an extent, this is true.

Turkey reopens Istanbul park at heart of protests

Istanbul: Turkey reopened an Istanbul park at the heart of last month’s demonstrations against Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan and protest leaders called a rally there for Monday evening in defiance of the city governor.

Istanbul Governor Huseyin Avni Mutlu announced the reopening three weeks after riot police expelled protesters from Gezi Park following a fortnight of frequently violent protests against plans to redevelop the area.

Ouster of Morsi: A setback for Erdoğan’s ‘new order’

The ancient land of the Pyramids and the land of ancient civilizations took a new stride on July 3 when its first-ever democratically elected president, Mohamed Morsi, was overthrown in a military coup d’état. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who was eying a new resurgent role for his country in the geopolitics of the Middle East and North Africa with the partnership of a Muslim Brotherhood-led Egypt met a huge setback.

The reverberations from the Egyptian coup have already started surfacing. Turkey, a major emerging player in the region, wholeheartedly embraced Morsi after his election victory, offering him all-out support to come out from the economic crisis and instability caused by prolonged instability after the fall of the decades-old Hosni Mubarak regime.

Turkey must release peaceful Taksim protesters

The Turkish authorities must immediately release peaceful demonstrators who were detained in Taksim yesterday. They must also investigate allegations of the excessive use of force after riot police used tear gas and water canons to clear the square and neighbouring Gezi park, Amnesty International said.

“The authorities in Turkey have the duty to ensure people can peacefully gather and express their views,” said John Dalhuisen, Europe and Central Asia Director at Amnesty International.

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