Locals clash with police in two provinces
KAYSERİ / NİĞDE - Doğan News Agency (DHA)
Villagers burned tires and clashed with security forces on the road between Niğde and Kayseri. DHA photoDisgruntled locals clashed with security forces in the Central Anatolian provinces of Kayseri and Niğde in two separate incidents today.
Residents of the Başakpınar neighborhood in Kayseri were angered after the municipality started building an asphalt manufacturing plant on an existing park. A group of residents gathered at the Başakpınar neighborhood square and chanted slogans, calling on the mayor to resign.
The group then marched toward the park, now a construction site, where the riot police had set up barricades in front of the gates to stop the crowd. The group, however, stormed the barricades and entered the plant. A spokesman for the neighborhood made a press statement after a brief scuffle with the police.
Several locals tried to attack construction workers but were blocked by the police. The group later dispersed without incident.
Villagers close highway
In a separate incident, farmers from eight different villages in Niğde blocked the highway between Niğde and Kayseri after their appeals to have their electricity restored were ignored by the provincial governor’s office.
Around 500 villagers, who said they were unable to irrigate their farms because their power was cut due to past unpaid bills, staged a sit-in in front of the Niğde Governor’s Office several days ago, but their protests failed to achieve their aims.
The crowd burned tires on the road to Kayseri and closed the road to traffic today. Clashes erupted between the villagers and police, leading gendarmerie forces to intervene with tear gas to open the road. One police officer and four soldiers were injured in the clashes.
Villagers dispersed into potato fields on the side of the road after the clashes and hurled rocks at security forces from there. Fifteen protesters were detained.
Republican People's Party (CHP) Niğde deputy Doğan Şafak, who was present at the scene, suffered from the effects of the tear gas.