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POLITICS > Prime Minister Erdoğan blesses Turkish police for ‘heroic’ action during Gezi unrest

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Erdoğan said the police had been 'quite tolerant' of the protests since they began almost one month ago. AA photo

Erdoğan said the police had been 'quite tolerant' of the protests since they began almost one month ago. AA photo

A graduation ceremony at the Police Academy offered a unique opportunity to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to hail and encourage the national police, as he said the police forces had written a “heroic saga” during the Gezi Park interventions.

“We will not let circles who have been adversaries of Turkey or international and national media to wear down our police. I and my government congratulate our police wholeheartedly. On behalf of my country and nation, I would like to thank all my police siblings for standing up against incidents that have been going on for weeks, with sacrifice and patriotism,” Erdoğan said in a speech delivered at the ceremony on June 24.

Erdoğan also asserted that the police countered the protests within the scope of law, despite cases of attacks and provocation that would never be tolerated in another country, as he called the actions of the police “a heroic saga.”

The prime minister has repeatedly and constantly defied criticism leveled against the police for brutality against protesters during the Gezi Park unrest, despite the fact that the excessive use of police force during the unrest in the country since May 3 has resulted in the deaths of three protesters and one police officer and the injury of nearly 5,000 people.

“Like I expressed before, our police have passed a very important, a very challenging democracy test with success,” Erdoğan said, adding that the police had been following orders within the authority granted to them, as much as fulfilling their duty within the scope of law and legitimacy, with great success.

“Sustaining such a long-term struggle without disrupting its solemnity and its discipline for 48 hours, while remaining hungry and thirsty, I am saying this clearly, is a task only our police can achieve. As the prime minister of a government that has extended freedoms to this extent, increased the standards of democracy and done so many reforms, I am expressing this with all my heart and all my sincerity: We are a government that says ‘zero tolerance to torture.’ We are a government that changed, democratized our police’s rules of intervention into incidents and of custody and interrogation. If our police made a mistake, we would say it openheartedly and do what was required. However, nobody, regardless of who they are, whether a lawmaker or someone, has the right to swear at and insult our police,” Erdoğan said, adding that the actions of the police were admirable.

June/24/2013

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READER COMMENTS

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mara mcglothin

6/25/2013 3:12:48 PM

RORSCHACH Great idea!!! Those hideous coats surely get some attention...and not in a good way.

Mehmet Ungrateful

6/25/2013 12:16:48 PM

The obstinate Tyrant is laughing at us all and saying "I can do what I like when I like" he can kill, maime, lock up and all he wants in return is your vote. What are we going to do?

young genius

6/25/2013 10:22:11 AM

Oops, my comment was suppose to be direct at @Tekion Particle haha

Rorschach ~

6/25/2013 7:05:26 AM

I foresee a new form of protest in Turkey. Following in the footsteps of the 'standing man,' Turks throughout the country shall wear hideous, plaid sports jackets... Viva la Plaid!!!!

Stephen Brunette

6/25/2013 6:59:33 AM

What's going to be wonderful is when Erdogan is thrown out of power, and he stands trial for his crimes against the Turkish people, then the real, proper investigations and then trials of all the senior police officers, and then junior officers who commited crimes and they too will face the full force of Turkish justice. The time is fast approaching and Erdogan knows the day of reckoning is around the corner. He will do anything to stay in power, including crushing human rights.

young genius

6/25/2013 5:06:25 AM

They bought their a lot voters!! They didn't win the elections completely "fair and square"

Barışçı

6/25/2013 2:44:23 AM

I'm not sure how Erdoğan can call hurting the people they are suppose to protect as heroic. Maybe the military should step in and show the AKP how to be "heroic" and see how they feel being on the other end.

James Hanvey

6/25/2013 1:02:48 AM

For a man who professes to be deeply religious, I can't understand his lack of shame at making such blantly false statements. Each day, there is yet another false statement and fiery rhetoric. Where is this going to lead the beautiful country of Turkey? What a sad time for the Turks.

Leon Williams

6/25/2013 12:19:35 AM

Erdoğan is a vile man and the Turkish police are fascists!

andrea dealmagro

6/24/2013 10:49:44 PM

Looks as if the storm troopers are getting a bit of belly... 3 miles of double quick daily will reduce their waistline and their anger toward people. Ouch that jacket again? it has to go
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