Erdoğan condemns ‘both sides’ over Istanbul record store attack
AA photoTurkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on June 19 that both the attackers and the attendees of a listening party for Radiohead’s new album were wrong, after a violent attack targeted a record store in the Beyoğlu district of Istanbul on June 17.
“To intervene with force is as wrong as engaging in such an event that poured onto the streets during Ramadan. Both sides are wrong. Those who do not respect the sensibilities of their own nation and city and those who respond to this with an undemocratic reaction unfortunately overshadowed our hospitality with the brawl they started,” Erdoğan said.
“But I say clearly that those who want to distort this simple event to create a legend about ‘an attack against those who do not fast’ are malevolent and ill-minded,” he added, speaking at an iftar dinner hosting artists at the Huber Palace in Istanbul’s Tarabya district.
A group of 20 assailants carrying sticks and bottles attacked the Velvet IndieGround, beating up store owners and Radiohead fans who were at the listening party of the band’s latest album, “A Moon Shaped Pool.”
Fans were listening to music and drinking alcohol when a group of angry men burst into the store and assaulted them. One of the fans was injured after being hit with a bottle while the record store was also vandalized.
Radiohead issued a statement condemning the attack.
Three suspects were detained over the assault but all were released on June 19.
Meanwhile, police fired teargas and used water cannons to disperse around 300 protesters who gathered in Firuzağa Square in Istanbul’s Cihangir neighborhood to protest the attack on June 18.