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Turkish Riot Police Overrun Taksim Square

Turkish riot police pushed through barricades at Istanbul's Taksim Square on Tuesday, firing tear gas and water cannon at hundreds of protesters.

Police moved into Taksim, the center of more than 10 days of anti-government protest, after dawn. Some demonstrators threw stones, fireworks and firebombs at police. Several people were injured.

Most protesters who had been on the square fled into the adjacent Gezi Park, where hundreds have been camping in an attempt to stop a government redevelopment project.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Tuesday that the demonstrations are a deliberate attempt to damage Turkey's image and economy.



He said the protesters are "trying to prevent Turkey's rise" and are being used by financial institutions and media groups to harm Turkey's economy.

The police move came after Mr. Erdogan agreed to meet with anti-government protesters Wednesday.

Three people have died since the marches and rallies began almost two weeks ago. About 5,000 people have been hurt and thousands of others arrested.

The demonstrations began as a protest against plans to redevelop a public park in Istanbul. They have since turned into a broader movement against what marchers call the prime minister's imposition of his Islamist views on a secular nation.

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