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September 24, 2021

Turkish police storm Taksim Square

Police seek to cleanse Istanbul centre of “signs of occupation”, as PM calls on Gezi Park protesters to disperse.

A defiant Turkish prime minister has called on protesters in Istanbul’s Gezi Park to disperse, hours after police moved into the adjoining Taksim Square, the cradle of ongoing demonstrations against his government, Al Jazeera reports. Addressing party MPs on Tuesday, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the ongoing protests targeted Turkey’s image and economy.
Hours earlier, the police backed by armoured vehicles and wielding shields, moved past barricades set up by protesters, and blocked all exits as small groups of demonstrators fought back against the early morning intervention. Protesters responded by throwing stones, petrol bombs and fireworks.
Taksim Square has been at the heart of anti-government demonstrations over the past two weeks. The protests were intially triggered by opposition to government plans for redeveloping the Gezi Park adjoining the square, before escalating into nationwide demonstrations against the government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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