Worker’s Day in Istanbul Creates Conflict Between Police and Protestors

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In Istanbul, Turkey, on May 1, 2016, the police confronted illegal protesters in Taksim Square. According to Reuters, there were several hundred people pushing to get into the square in protest. The Turkish authorities used tear gas and water cannons in response to those who chose to confront the police.

In preparation for the protest, there were 25,000 officers dispatched to deter those who wanted to demonstrate in the square. During the skirmish between protesters and the police, one man lost his life. He was hit by a water cannon truck as he attempted to walk across the street to join the protest. Nail Mavus, 57, was taken to the hospital and passed away as a result of his injuries. At least 20 people were arrested.

Authorities in Istanbul provided officially sanctioned locations for the workers to hold their demonstrations. Some unions marked International Worker’s Day in Bakirkoy, which is near the airport.

Additionally, Turkish security forces claim they were able to prevent an attack by ISIS. Reuters reported the Islamic State had planned to carry out an attack in Ankara. The plan was supposed to take place during the International Worker’s Day celebrations. The anti-terror department reported that four suspects were arrested at midnight on April 30.

By Cathy Milne


Reuters: Turkish police fire tear gas in central Istanbul on May Day protesters
RT: 1 dead, police disperse Istanbul May Day protesters with tear gas, water cannon (VIDEOS)
Hurriyet Daily News: Man hit by police water cannon dies in Istanbul’s Taksim
Image Courtesy of Harold Litwiler’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License