(TheLibertyRevolution.com)- While the government forbade it, thousands of Turkish women marched in Istanbul in honor of International Women’s Day.
According to a report, the protest, which lasted for over two hours until police fired tear gas and arrested at least 30 individuals, denounced the administration of President Erdogan for the weak reaction to the devastating earthquakes on February 6.
For the last seven years, Istanbul has prohibited any kind of celebration of International Women’s Day. Since the prohibition is often issued at the last moment, protesters and organizers of counter-protests have no time to prepare. Anyone who wants to demonstrate in Istanbul should expect a harsh response from the police.
This year’s rationale for outlawing the march was that it might disturb public order, the ladies could incite violence, and terrorists might utilize the protest for an assault on Istanbul’s Taksim plaza.
Protesters were holding signs about the recent earthquakes that claimed the lives of almost 46,000 people.
Angry Turks have been directing most of their attention at the contractors who, with the approval of Erdogan’s government, ignored seismic safety rules and caused the tragic loss of life. To quell this unrest, the government has jailed hundreds of construction workers.
On June 18, Turkey will conduct presidential elections, and most observers agree that, due to the fury over earthquakes and the opposition rallying behind Republican People’s Party (CHP) contender Kemal Kilicdaroglu, Erdogan will face the most significant threat of his time in office.
Turkish media report that in the wake of the two devastating earthquakes that struck Turkey’s southeastern Kahramanmaras region, killing almost 50,000 people, the country’s largest metropolis, Istanbul, has taken the situation there with a new sense of urgency.
European media have reported that inhabitants of the city are panicking as large fissures appear in more and more structures, posing a real risk that some of their homes may fall.
Seventy percent of the city’s buildings were built before 1999, when stricter construction rules were enacted, and are thus considered unsafe. It was recently discovered via research that a seismic catastrophe in this region might kill up to 90,000. Efforts are therefore being made to get the city ready for it.