Use of tear gas against peaceful protesters a 'violation of human rights': Amnesty
A police officer fires tear gas against protesters in Ankara on May 31. The protesters had gathered to show solidarity with the demonstrations in Istanbul. AA photoAmnesty International has called on the Turkish authorities to immediately halt the brutal police repression in protests triggered by the demolition of Taksim Gezi Park at the heart of Istanbul, adding that the use of tear gas against demonstrators was a violation of human rights.
"The use of tear gas against peaceful protesters and in confined spaces where it may constitute a serious danger to health is unacceptable, breaches international human rights standards and must be stopped immediately," said the Director of Europe and Central Asia Programme at Amnesty International, John Dalhuisen, in a statement May 31.
"The use of violence by police on this scale appears designed to deny the right to peaceful protest altogether and to discourage others from taking part," he added.
Quoting activist who observed that some protesters were hit with truncheons, the organization also urged a transparent investigation on the police intervention.
Officials have put the number of injured to 12 after the police's morning crackdown on Taksim Gezi Park May 31. However, according to witnesses' accounts more than a hundred have been injured during the police interventions and at least two have received emergency surgery.