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No retreat by Erdogan

10 June 2013

Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan is on a campaign to rally his supporters and counter the mass protests that have been held over the past ten days.

In a rally held a Esenboga airport, Ankara, the Turkish prime minister said that “patience has its limits”.

He asked how protesters could “attack” his police and accused hard-liners of hiding behind the protesters.

Erdogan said that the government’s patience was running out and again asked the demonstrators to stop their activities. He said that they should be patient and use the ballot box if they wanted a stand-off.

“If you have a problem you can choose your representatives and convey them to my mayor, my governor or myself. But if you continue like this, I will be obliged to speak in a language that you understand. We will respond accordingly.”

Erdogan also continued to claim that protesters were engaged in vandalism. “Rights and freedoms are not achieved with violence but within the law,” he said.

Erdogan held two other rallies earlier in the day, in Adana and Mersin. After holding a rally at the Esenboga airport on his arrival to Ankara, he also spoke at several rally points where hundreds were gathered to greet him.

The government has scheduled counter-rallies next weekend in Ankara and Istanbul in a bid to fight back against the demonstrations over the demolition of Gezi Park, which have turned into a movement demanding more individual freedoms from the government.

Continuing his fingerpointing, Erdogan turned his attention to special interest groups who he accused of being behind the protests. He charged banking groups of being involved and said that if the stock exchange fails then everyone will suffer.

“The interest lobby should better behave itself. This lobby exploited my people for years. We have shown patience for a long time. I am not saying this only for one bank or two but for all , whoever [they are], making this lobby. Those who have started this fight against us, you will pay the price heavily.

Those who tried to let the stock exchange collapse: Tayyip Erdogan has no money there, if it collapses you will also collapse with it. The moment we discover stock exchange speculation, we will ram it down your throat,” he added.

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