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Turkey: Gezi Spirit Not Easily Subdued

A year after challenging Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s iron grip on power, Turkey’s anti-government Gezi-Park protest movement continues to inspires some, and worry others.

The mass rallies started on May 31, 2013, after police forcefully evicted a handful of environmentalists from Istanbul’s downtown Gezi Park. The environmentalists had been camping out in the park in an effort to prevent reported government plans to build another shopping mall on the site.

Large-scale protests and confrontations with riot police continued for months. Ultimately, the demonstrations against official abuses of power posed the biggest threat to Erdoğan’s rule since his Islamist-influenced Justice and Development Party (AKP) came to power in 2002.

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Dorian Jones is a freelance reporter based in Istanbul.

Turkey: Gezi Spirit Not Easily Subdued

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