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U.S. welcomes Turkey's apology on cracking down protesters


08:31, June 05, 2013

WASHINGTON, June 4 (Xinhua) -- The White House said on Tuesday that it welcomed Turkey's apology for use of excessive force to crack down protesters.

"We noted, obviously, the comments by the (Turkish) deputy prime minister," White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters. "We welcome the deputy prime minister's comments apologizing for excessive force, and we continue to welcome calls for these events to be investigated."

"We hope that, as we have made clear, that the Turkish government will handle this in a way that respects the rights of free speech and assembly," he said.

The nationwide protests in Turkey erupted a week ago after police violently broke up a peaceful sit-in against the demolition of Gezi Park close to Istanbul's Taksim Square.

Turkish police fired tear gas and water canon to the disperse the protesters, leaving two dead and scores wounded.

On Monday, White House expressed its concern over the protests in Turkey, urging all parties to refrain from violence.

On Tuesday, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc apologized to the protesters for the excessive force used by the police, and he is expected to meet with some of the protesters on Wednesday.

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