Turkish police tighten security on anniversary of Taksim Square unrest

Published May 31st, 2015 - 11:58 GMT
Riot police fire tear gas on demonstrators in Istanbul's Taksim Square, June 11 2013.  (AFP/Bulent Kilic)
Riot police fire tear gas on demonstrators in Istanbul's Taksim Square, June 11 2013. (AFP/Bulent Kilic)

Turkish police sealed off Istanbul’s Taksim Square Sunday on the second anniversary of anti-government protests that centered around the square in 2013, AFP reported.

Police halted public transportation links to the area as well as blocking off major roads leading to the square, according to an AFP photographer.

Riot police have been stationed in the square alongside water cannon trucks to counter any demonstrations.

The 2013 protests began after authorities removed trees from the area as part of government plans to renovate Gezi Park, which lies adjacent to Taksim Square. 

The protests, which quickly grew into mass demonstrations against the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), were met with water cannons and tear gas

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who was premier at the time, accused the demonstrators of trying to threaten the state and has since said the government will take a tough stance against street demonstrations. 


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