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    Er: "Turkish police have never been in favor of maltreatment"

    Hürriyet Haber
    11.03.2005 - 16:56 | Son Güncelleme:

    Ramazan Er, the deputy director general and spokesman of the Security Department, said on Friday that an investigation has been under way into the excessive use of force by police in a demonstration in Istanbul on March 6th International Women's Day.

    Speaking at the weekly press briefing Er said: ''5,263 demonstrations were held throughout Turkey in 2004 with the participation of 3,735,000 people. During those demonstrations, 2,624 people were detained. 39 citizens and 183 policemen were injured. Security forces intervened in only 3 percent of those demonstrations''.

    Replying to question about the controversial demonstration in Istanbul, Er told reporters, ''on March 6th, police allowed demonstrators to read a press statement under the scope of Freedom of Expression Law. However, demonstrators chanted separatist slogans following the reading. They also hindered traffic by blocking the roads. Some of them attacked on security forces with iron bars. As a reaction, security forces used their authority of using force to disperse the crowd.''

    ''During the events, four policemen were injured and three police vehicles were damaged. We have launched an investigation into the violence. It will be completed soon. Turkish police have never been in favor of maltreatment. Police has the authority of using force, not the authority of punishment,'' Er added.

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