Turkish riot police storm Istanbul park in bid to end protests

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkish riot police stormed an Istanbul park at the heart of two weeks of protest against Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan yesterday, firing tear gas and water cannon and sending hundreds scurrying into surrounding streets.

Lines of police backed by armoured vehicles sealed off Taksim Square in the centre of the city as officers stormed the adjoining Gezi Park, where protesters had been living in a ramshackle tent camp.

Erdogan had warned hours earlier that security forces would clear the square, the centre of more than two weeks of fierce anti-government protests that spread to cities across Turkey, unless the demonstrators withdrew before a ruling party rally in Istanbul today.

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