‘Here to stay’: Turkey protesters remain defiant

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Following a week of protests, music can be heard at Istanbul’s Gezi Park in Turkey.

Protestors say they are here to stay.


While some demonstrators set up banners and signs across the park calling on Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to resign, others danced and sang celebrating an almost festive atmosphere.

Street vendors have been set up across the park to sell, or sometimes give out, food to protesters.

What started off as a protest against a planned construction at the park has developed into larger demonstrations across the country sharing anger towards Erdogan and Turkey’s AK Party.
The Turkish government plans to construct Ottoman barracks as well as a shopping mall in the location of Gezi Park.

According to protestors, they are now calling themselves “capulcu,” which means vandals or looters, following Erdogan’s labeling of protesters with the term.

“We are capulcu, as we said, we are all here as a capulcu now, because he [Erdogan] said that,” a protestor told Al Arabiya correspondent Rima Maktabi.

Turkey, perceived as a liberal role model in the Middle East, has angered protesters saying that it is gradually becoming a conservative Islamic state.

Meanwhile, students protesting in Turkish universities are seemingly not in a hurry to end demonstrations.

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