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Turkey May Day protests : Injuries, arrests reported in Istanbul clashes
Turkey May Day protests : Injuries, arrests reported in Istanbul clashes

Turkey May Day protests : Injuries, arrests reported in Istanbul clashes

A massive police operation has cracked down on May Day protests in the Turkish city of Istanbul. Riot officers have blocked off the city’s iconic Taksim Square and have deployed tear gas and water cannon against crowds of demonstrators.

Defying a ban on May Day protests, hundreds of protesters clashed with police in the Besiktas neighborhood of Istanbul. Some activists threw Molotov cocktails and fireworks at police officers, who retaliated with rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannon.

Around 40,000 police officers, water cannon trucks and armoured vehicles were deployed throughout Istanbul according to reports.

Police cordoned off all the avenues, streets and alleys leading to Taksim.

Around 138 people have been detained, while 51 people have been injured according to the Progressive Lawyers Association.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned protesters to “give up hopes” of meeting on Taksim Square.

The unions rejected the idea.

“We will be in Taksim despite the irrational and illegal ban. All roads will lead to Taksim on May Day, and our struggle for labour, equality, freedom, justice and peace will continue,” the main unions said in a joint statement on Wednesday.

Agencies/Canadajournal




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