- Title: Opposition groups demonstrate against government in Istanbul
- Date: 20th November 2016
- Summary: ISTANBUL, TURKEY (NOVEMBER 20, 2016) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS WALKING TOWARDS DEMONSTRATION AREA VARIOUS OF POLICE CONTROLLING PEOPLE AT ENTRANCE OF DEMONSTRATION AREA VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS, SOME SHOWING VICTORY SIGN AND BANNERS IN DEMONSTRATION AREA (SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) PROTESTER, VEDAT SEVIM, SAYING: "Now the country [Turkey] is becoming a really bad place. We have innumerable problems. Only organised groups can confront these problems. So gathering here is very important." (SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) PROTESTER, GULIZAR, SAYING: "In a country in which they [the government] made plans to release killers and rapists while thinkers are in prison, we can't stay at home. It is time to speak, not to be silent." (SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) PROTESTER, SEVGI DEMIR, SAYING: "AKP is trying to create a dark state and government. It [AKP] is trying to create a country of torture for women, the young and for workers. It is trying to create a dictatorship. Those who are against violence, harassment, rape, dictatorship came here today." VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS HOLDING BANNERS SAYING (Turkish): "WE WON'T SURRENDER" VARIOUS OF FEMALE PROTESTERS SHOWING VICTORY SIGNS, WAVING FLAGS
- Embargoed: 5th December 2016 15:20
- Keywords: demonstration Turkey Istanbul government protests
- Location: ISTANBUL, TURKEY
- City: ISTANBUL, TURKEY
- Country: Turkey
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0015990E2V
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Thousands rallied in Istanbul on Sunday (November 20), protesting against the Turkish government and what they say is a clampdown on civil freedoms after a failed coup attempt earlier in the year.
NGOs, workers' unions and opposition parties came together in the Kartal district of Istanbul to protest against the ruling AKP party under the slogan: "We won't surrender', while Turkish police set up checkpoints around the area keeping a close eye on the demonstrators.
"Now the country [Turkey] is becoming a really bad place. We have innumerable problems. Only organised groups can confront these problems. So gathering here is very important," protester Vedat Sevim said.
Turkey is fighting an insurgency by PKK militants in the largely Kurdish southeast, but the arrest of pro-Kurdish politicians and journalists, part of a wider security clampdown in the wake of a failed July coup, has raised fears among Western allies for human rights in the country.
The crackdown on pro-Kurdish politicians has run parallel with a purge of people accused of ties to U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, blamed by Turkish authorities for masterminding July's coup attempt. Gulen denies the accusation.
More than 110,000 people have been sacked or suspended in the military, civil service, judiciary and elsewhere, while 36,000 people have been jailed pending trial as part of the investigation into the failed putsch.
Human rights groups and some Western allies have voiced concern at the scope of the purges, fearing President Tayyip Erdogan is using the coup as a pretext to curtail dissent.
The Turkish government says the actions are justified given the threat to the state posed by the coup attempt, in which more than 240 people died.
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