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Turkish protesters set up barricades in Ankara
 

Turkish protesters have once again taken to the streets in a residential area of the Turkish capital, setting up barricades and lighting small bonfires.
Weeks of often violent anti-government protests have mostly died out in Istanbul and the centre of the capital, Ankara, but daily demonstrations have continued in its recently developed working-class Dikmen district.
The protesters, blocked Dikmen's main road with makeshift barricades and started small fires late on Wednesday, some chanting anti-government slogans.
Riot police and water cannon trucks initially kept their distance but moved in to disperse the protesters in the early hours, footage from the anti-government channel Halk TV showed.
The images showed police firing rounds of teargas and detaining several protesters.
Thousands of people had marched through the neighbourhood the previous night in protest at the release pending trial of a policeman accused of shooting and killing a protester this month. Police fired teargas and water cannon to disperse them.
The weeks of protests have highlighted divisions in Turkish society, including between religious conservatives who form the bedrock of support for the prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and more liberal Turks.
Four people were killed in the broader unrest, including one policeman, and about 7,500 wounded with injuries ranging from lacerations to breathing difficulties from teargas inhalation, according to the Turkish Medical Association.
A report by the children's rights group Gündem Çocuk said at least 294 people under the age of 18 had been detained between 28 May and 25 June in relation to the unrest. It said some had been exposed to teargas, pressurised water and percussion bombs and had been beaten by police with batons.
Turkey has come under international criticism for its handling of the protests, which began in late May as peaceful resistance to plans to redevelop an Istanbul park.
The EU rebuked Turkey this week, postponing a new round of membership talks for at least four months.
Erdoğan has held a series of mass rallies across the country since the trouble started, dismissing the protesters as "pawns of Turkey's enemies" and calling on his supporters to back his party in municipal elections in March.


 

 

 

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