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Police fire teargas, water cannons at Istanbul protesters

Sunday, Dec 22, 2013 - 00:49

Dec. 22 - Police in Istanbul clash with anti-government protesters and fire teargas and water cannons at them. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Turkish police on Sunday clashed with protesters in Istanbul as they marched against the Turkish government's urbanization plans and a corruption investigation in which scores of people, including the sons of ministers, have been arrested. Hundreds of protesters gathered in a square in Istanbul's Kadikoy district, holding banners calling on Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's government to resign, Turkey's Dogan News agency reported. Erdogan denounced the corruption inquiry as the work of "dark alliances" and vowed to expose those involved. In a crackdown on the police command, he has already removed dozens of police chiefs from their duties. Sixteen people, including the sons of two ministers, were charged on Saturday in connection with a Turkish corruption investigation that has struck at the heart of the ruling elite and threatened the authority of Erdogan. Erdogan raised the stakes in the crisis on Saturday by saying some unnamed foreign ambassadors in the country had been involved in "provocative actions". A pro-government newspaper had accused the U.S. ambassador of encouraging the move against Halkbank - a charge denied by the U.S. embassy. The investigation, which has roiled markets, is widely seen as a symptom of a power struggle with a U.S.-based cleric who wields influence with the police and judiciary. Dozens of police chiefs have been removed from their posts since detentions began. That cleric, Fethullah Gulen, condemned the police purge, invoking God's punishment on those responsible. Erdogan has refrained from naming Gulen as the hand behind the investigation. But Gulen's Hizmet (or Service) movement has been increasingly at odds with Erdogan in recent months. A total of 24 people have now been formally arrested and are awaiting trial on corruption allegations.

Police fire teargas, water cannons at Istanbul protesters

Sunday, Dec 22, 2013 - 00:49

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