Turkey Protests: On the footsteps of Syria?

Ludovica's picture

The battle to save the green hid much deeper reasons of the malcontent of Turkish civilians. It was the 31st of May when dozens of people gathered in Gezi Park, Istanbul, and protested against the government’s plan to demolish the park in order to build up a shopping centre.

However, the protests soon revealed a population which is highly disappointed by the government’s actions and the PM Tayyip Erdogan’s attempt to impose Muslim-orientated values on the secular state.

The Turkish citizen İnsanlik Hali - who addressed a letter to the world in which he explains the reasons of the protests and provides the account of the ongoing situation (widely ignored by the media in the first stage of its developments) – explains:

“They [the protesters] all gathered to prevent the demolition of something bigger than the park: The right to live as honorable citizens of this country. People who are marching to the center of Istanbul are demanding their right to live freely and receive justice, protection and respect from the State. They demand to be involved in the decision-making processes about the city they live in.”

The police intervened by using water cannons, pepper spray and tear gas which resulted in the death of three, unarmed, protestants and several injured. While Mr Erdogan accused the police of being unnecessary brutal towards the civilians, he condemned the protests as they are undemocratic.

He also justified his refusal to resign reminding the people of his 2011 victory, when he took 50% of the votes. However, 50 % means half- victory, as the country is divided and half the population is discontent.

This is the same 50/50 that brought Syria to the civil war; sparking violence and hate among the regime supporters and those who hope in a change of leadership, with the result of over a million of refugees and several UN appeals to intervene, in order to stop the tremendous massacres.

Solidarity With The Protestors

İnsanlik Hali is one of the millions who hope to see their rights recognized by the authorities. In his letter he concludes: “I am hoping to gain: Freedom of expression and speech, Respect for human rights […] But most of all by spreading the word to you, I am hoping to get your awareness, support and help! Please spread the word and share this blog.”

Dear İnsanlik, we will spread the word and aware of what happened in Syria, we hope this will help achieving what you are sacrificing your lives for.

Ludovica Iaccino is an Italian who graduated in international journalism and is currently living in London. Read more posts by her hereImage by Alan Hilditch, Flickr.

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