In light of the Turkish government's oppression of mass peaceful protests and its stifling of media reporting, the GUE/NGL Group condemns Prime Minister Erdogan's actions and calls for an immediate end to the violence.

GUE/NGL President Gabi Zimmer, said: “We condemn the state violence of the Turkish Government against the demonstrators. The government must stop its authoritarian style of governing and hold talks with the protesters to avoid an escalation of the violence and further victims. Erdogan's actions are creating a dangerous division in Turkish society.”

GUE/NGL Vice-President Takis Hadjigeorgiou, Member of the Delegation to the EU-Turkey Joint Parliamentary Committee, commented: “We express our solidarity with the demonstrators' demands for respect of democracy and democratic and human rights and freedoms. We call on the Turkish Government to immediately end this violence against its people.”

According to reports more than 1000 people have been arrested and hundreds injured while several people are said to have died. Turkish anti-riot police are also specifically targeting political parties. 

MEP Hadjigeorgiou continued: “These mass protests highlight the numerous and deep-rooted problems the country is facing. Although positive steps have been made by AKP-led governments to limit the role of the army in political life and on efforts to negotiate a solution to the Kurdish problem, the government projects an increasingly more despotic image, which is of course of great concern first and foremost to the Turkish people. Turkey, as a candidate for EU accession, must promote democracy and reinforce democratic and human rights and freedoms.”

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