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LOCAL > Group commemorating slain Gezi protester attacked by civilians in central Istanbul

ISTANBUL - Hurriyet Daily News

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The protests have spread to many city parks, where civilian forums are now frequently held. This file photo shows a forum gathering at Yoğurtçu Park in Istanbul's Kadıköy district.DHA photo

The protests have spread to many city parks, where civilian forums are now frequently held. This file photo shows a forum gathering at Yoğurtçu Park in Istanbul's Kadıköy district.DHA photo

A group of men with knives and sticks attacked a Gezi Park forum in the late hours of July 11, in the Kocamustafaşa neighborhood of the conservative Istanbul district Fatih.

Similar to other Gezi forums nationwide, the Kocamustafapaşa event was proceeding as usual until a group of men showed up at the scene and attacked the participants with knives and sticks.

The attackers threatened the crowd, ordering them to leave the site and to “go to Taksim.” Footage showing the attack soon surfaced on the popular video website YouTube. One person was wounded during the attack, according to daily Milliyet.

The incident prompted the Anti-Capitalist Muslims group to announce iftar plans to take place in Kocamustafaşa tonight, calling on all to set tables on Kocamustafaşa Square “to fight fascism.” The group is known for its pro-Gezi stance and has been involved in the protests since they first erupted in late May.

The forum had been organized to commemorate Ali İsmail Korkmaz, who died due to wounds received when he was beaten by unidentified people in the Eskişehir protests on June 2.

With the clearing and subsequent lockdown of Gezi Park, protests spread to city parks across Turkey, where citizens’ forums are now being frequently held. Though the park near Taksim Square was reopened to public use after a municipality renovation, a strong risk of police intervention hangs over protesters at the park.

July/12/2013

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