Workers block Istanbul TEM highway after alleged attack
ISTANBUL – Hürriyet Daily News
DAILY NEWS PhotoAround 200 construction workers staged a protest on the Trans-European Motorway (TEM) on Sept 20 in Istanbul’s Bağcılar district, to draw attention to an alleged attack against their co-workers that took place the previous night.
A fight that erupted among workers at a building site resulted in two workers being stabbed.
The fight occurred due to the workers’ ethnic origins, protesters said, according to Daily Radikal. The attack on Tekin Güngör and Muhammet Öztürk came at night, and their friends claim it was motivated by the fact that they were speaking Kurdish with their families on the phone.
Nearly 200 workers gathered in the construction area before marching to the office site of private broadcaster Kanal D and daily Hürriyet to make their voice heard.
The workers then blocked the traffic in the Mahmutbey neighborhood, where they started a sit in protest. They later returned to the construction area and demanded a meeting with the building contractors, saying they had no life security at work.
Protesters said the police and paramedics arrived too late on the night of the attack.
Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) Istanbul deputy Sebahat Tuncel, who visited the construction site where the incident took place, said via her Twitter account that most of the workers at the construction site were Kurdish, and that they feel a lack of security and safety.
The wounded men are reportedly in good condition and are receiving treatment in a hospital.
The protest went on for nearly an hour, and traffic was opened up again after being halted for a brief period.