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Turkish parliament speaker calls to end protests


08:37, June 04, 2013

ANKARA, June 3 (Xinhua) -- Turkish Parliament Speaker Cemil Cicek on Monday called for an end to Gezi Park protests that started in Taksim Square of Istanbul and led to demonstrations nationwide.

Speaking to reporters on Monday here, Cicek said "If there are expectations and demands, we should express them within the framework of law and by doing it in the right way, and we should not cause any sad events that could damage others' rights."

"Of course, there might be people in this country who do not like government policies and want to protest them. The way of doing should be to react within the confines of law and public safety," Cicek said.

He noted "there are people who attend the protest in good faith while there are people who use such an event like this for their own thoughts, policies and expectations. We know this from our past experiences."

A total of 173 people were injured in clashes between protesters and policemen in the nationwide protests in the past week, according to Turkish authorities on Monday.

Turkish Interior Minister Muammer Guler said at least 115 police officers and 58 protesters were injured in the demonstrations which started last week by a group of protesters in Gezi Park to stand guard against the uprooting of trees.

The protests started as an environmental sit-in protest at the park over plans to redevelop that part of Taksim Square, and then turned into anti-government demonstrations against Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government.

In Istanbul, 100,000 people took to the streets over the weekend and clashed with riot police who fired tear gas.

For two days, thousands of people tried to attack the office of Erdogan in Istanbul with some windows broken by stones, and some protesters set fire to offices of the ruling Justice and Development Party.

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