Police, protesters clash in Istanbul, one person wounded: media

ISTANBUL Thu May 22, 2014 6:03am EDT

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ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkish police fired tear gas to disperse protesters throwing petrol bombs and stones in the Istanbul district of Okmeydani on Thursday and one person was seriously wounded, the private Dogan news agency and other media reported.

A photo showing a man with a large pool of blood around his head was published by Turkish news websites and on social media. Video footage showed police firing water cannon at protesters and one policeman firing a pistol into the air beside a police armored vehicle.

The incident occurred when a group of some 10-15 people began chanting slogans about a youth who had died in previous clashes with police and about a mine disaster last week in which 301 people died, Dogan news agency said.

It said that a funeral ceremony was being held nearby at the time of the clash and that one person in that area had fallen to the ground in a pool of blood.

Istanbul police could not confirm details of the incident.

The working class district of Okmeydani, near the centre of the city, is frequently the scene of protests, largely by left-wing activists.

The incident occurred nearly one year to the day after protests in central Istanbul triggered a summer of nationwide anti-government demonstrations.

(Writing by Daren Butler; Editing by Nick Tattersall and Ralph Boulton)

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