Istanbul Bristling with Tension as Erdogan Plans to Meet Protestors

World | June 12, 2013, Wednesday // 08:15
Bulgaria: Istanbul Bristling with Tension as Erdogan Plans to Meet Protestors Turkish riot police at the entrance to the Gezi Park during clashes in Taksim Square Istanbul, Turkey on 11 June 2013. Photo by EPA/BGNES

Tensions are running high in Istanbul on Wednesday morning, making uncertain plans for protestors' meeting with Prime Minister Erdogan.

On Tuesday evening Turkish riot police used tear gas to disperse thousands of anti-government demonstrators who gathered on Taksim Square in Istanbul, after a day of sporadic clashes.

Many protesters regrouped in nearby Gezi Park, where unrest continued into Wednesday morning.

At dawn, bulldozers moved into Taksim Square to clear away debris, barricades and makeshift shelters.

Protests began 13 days ago over the redevelopment of Gezi Park.

They then widened, with demonstrators accusing Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of becoming increasingly authoritarian and trying to impose conservative Islamic values.

Four people have been killed, including one policeman, according to the Turkish Human Rights Foundation.

Some 5,000 protesters have been treated for injuries or the effects of tear gas, while officials say 600 police have also been injured.

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Tags: taksim square, protests, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, PM, Turkish, turkey, Gezi park
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