It feels like a political version of the movie “Groundhog Day”: Another country, another occupation, another outpouring of public anger. But what can we expect from the demonstrations in Turkey?
With regards to freedom of speech, Turkey and China are almost at eye level. But the AKP’s recent crackdown on protesters is only the most obvious symptom of a creeping concentration of power that has been going on for several years.
Erdogan’s plans to redevelop Gezi Park have been scrapped, but the Turkish turmoil continues. While protesters want to break the chains of oppression, the government prepares for the final showdown. An eyewitness account.
The future of the Turkish protest movement is unpredictable after the clearing of Taksim Square and Gezi Park– in contrast to the government’s reaction. As long as Erdogan remains in power, we can expect harsh police tactics and a narrow definition of democracy.
On Saturday night, police started to evict protesters from Istanbul’s Gezi Park. But for Erdogan, it’s too little too late. The protests have turned from a fight over urban spaces into a fight against the government.
In the streets of Istanbul, a new democratic spirit is taking root. But the violent repression of dissent shows that it cannot flourish as long as Erdogan remains in charge.