DirenGeziParki.com – Tracking police and state brutality in Turkey

My plans for an editorial this fine Saturday morning changed; writing about anything other than the police & state brutality in Istanbul, Turkey would be inappropriate.

Tens of thousands of people peacefully marched and occupied Gezi Park, one of the last remaining patches of green in Istanbul.

Gezi Parki demonstrators.

Gezi Parki demonstrators.

The Turkish state, led by Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, has decided to tear down the park and its many trees, and replace it with a shopping mega-mall. Large police forces in full riot gear were mobilized in the area yesterday, attacking those that peacefully sat at the park to oppose its destruction.

Imagine, if Central Park in New York City were to be turned into a gigantic display of human consumption; if every tree were cut off and replaced by Macy’s sales signs.

While there are unconfirmed news of five casualties during the police attacks, there are dozens of wounded and many more that suffered the direct brutality of the police; the latter, is using tear gas and water guns to disperse the demonstrators, many of which are men and women well past their 60s.

The web site DirenGeziParki.com has been launched to gather and share through the Internet visuals related to the violent police intervention in Istanbul and at Gezi Park.

The Turkish media are keeping quiet in the face of the situation; major networks such as CNN have only made small references to the news. In effect, the police violence against peaceful demonstrators is being exposed by consistent blogging and on Twitter, where the hashtags #occupygezi and #direngeziparki are currently trending worldwide.

While Yahoo! News displays nothing about the police violence in Istanbul, Tumblr, a recent acquisition by Yahoo! has been mobilized; OccupyGeziPics is one such source of photos that vividly display the violent attacks of the police against peaceful demonstrators.

Help spread the news. Today it’s Gezi Park, tomorrow your local park will be turned into cement.

This post is 100% true!

This post is 100% true!

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