Turkish Protesters: We're Not Going Anywhere

They reject government's park offer

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted Jun 15, 2013 6:36 AM CDT

(Newser) – Yesterday, Turkey's government offered to stop pushing the redevelopment of Istanbul's Gezi Park until after a court ruling; today, protesters say that's not enough. They plan to hold their ground, they say, per the BBC: "We will continue our resistance in the face of any injustice and unfairness taking place in our country," says the Taksim Solidarity Group of demonstrators. "This is only the beginning." The decision comes after Taksim Solidarity members discussed the government's offer with fellow protesters, prompting calls of "Cowards! Liars! Sheep!" the New York Times reports.

"The government thinks the solidarity group represents all of us, and the rest are extremists and terrorists, but that is just not true," says a protester. "We do not have a representative." The stance could pave the way for new clashes with police, the Times notes. The capital, Ankara, saw just such action last night as police cleared protesters with tear gas and water cannons; some 30 protesters were reportedly arrested, the BBC notes.

A protester sleeping on a bench is covered with umbrellas at Gezi Park, Taksim Square in Istanbul early Saturday, June 15, 2013.
A protester sleeping on a bench is covered with umbrellas at Gezi Park, Taksim Square in Istanbul early Saturday, June 15, 2013.   (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
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