Pro-Kurdish demonstrators and Turkish police clashed in Istanbul today after protesters blamed the government for a suspected Islamic State suicide bombing
Violence erupted with police firing tear-gas and water cannon at hundreds of protesters in Taksim Square following the death of 31 people in a bomb attack in the border town of Suruc.
Some activists chanted slogans against President Tayyip Erdogan and the ruling AK Party, including: ‘Murderer Islamic State, collaborator Erdogan and AKP.’
Fighting back: Clashes erupted between the demonstrators and police after the demonstration turned nasty
Clampdown: Turkish police deployed water cannon and released tear gas to halt the protesters
Turkey’s Kurds have been enraged by what they see as Ankara’s failure to do more to stop Islamic State, calling on President Erdogan to crackdown on ISIS activity.
The PKK Kurdish militant group earlier said it held the government responsible for Monday’s attack, saying Ankara had ‘supported and cultivated’ Islamic State against the Kurds in Syria.
The demonstration in Istanbul had largely been peaceful, but some protesters threw bottles at police, the witness said.
The demonstrations come after funerals were held this afternoon for the 31 victims of the suspected ISIS suicide bomb attack in southern Turkey, which also left 100 people injured.
Most of the victims were Kurdish students with the Federation of Socialist Youths, who were rallying in support for the displaced residents of Kobane, outside a cultural centre in the town of Suruc.
Fighting back: Riot police exchange heavy fire with protesters as the demonstrations descends into violence