After the festival-like scenes in Taksim Square this past weekend, the violence of the police crackdown today shocked many. For his part, Prime Minister Erdogan struck a defiant tone, announcing in a televised speech that he would shown no more tolerance for continued protests.
Andrew Gardner, Turkey researcher for Amnesty International, responded:
The Turkish Prime Minister has sought to declare the recent wave of protests over by personal diktat – this is not how the freedom of assembly works. Prime Minister Erdogan now bears personal responsibility for the violence that immediately followed his words. Peaceful protest must be respected and the international community must urge him to change tack to prevent further unnecessary bloodshed.
At this writing, violence continues in Taksim Square and elsewhere in Turkey.