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Erdogan defends riot police tactics in Turkey protests

5 years ago89 views

reuters

Reuters

Before a rally of thousands of flag-waving supporters Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan defended riot police who fired water cannons at crowds in Istanbul.

(SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) TURKISH PRIME MINISTER TAYYIP ERDOGAN, SAYING:

"Yesterday, they once again attempted to occupy the square. Police showed patience up until a point. They made a series of warnings but when the crowd refused to leave -- police had to disperse them"

He also scolded demonstrators for their behavior

(SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) TURKISH PRIME MINISTER TAYYIP ERDOGAN, SAYING:

"We want an end to this, we expect to see the end of the attacks against police and to illegal, unethical behavior and actions"

Sunday's mass rally was the fifth which Erdogan has called since protests began in Istanbul in an unprecedented challenge to his 10-year rule.

The protests have underlined divisions in Turkish society between religious conservatives who form the bedrock of Erdogan's support and more

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