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Turkish court throws out Taksim redevelopment project that sparked mass protests

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(Reuters) – A Turkish court has cancelled a project to redevelop Istanbul’s central Taksim square, a copy of the court’s decision showed, ruling in a dispute that triggered a nationwide wave of violent anti-government protests.

The administrative court ruled in early June, at the height of the unrest, that a master plan to reshape the square violated preservation rules, the square’s identity and other regulations, according to a lawyer for the plaintiffs.

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The decision may jeopardize what many saw as Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s personal quest to remake Taksim Square in the teeth of opposition that led to mass protests over his perceived authoritarian style of rule.

Erdogan said on June 14 that his government would wait for the judiciary to rule, including the appeals process, before proceeding with Taksim’s development.

The leafy Gezi Park, one of central Istanbul’s few green spaces, became a makeshift campsite occupied by thousands of people to stop the park’s demolition and protest at the government’s plans.

Anger mushroomed into mass demonstrations against Erdogan’s rule and Islamist-inspired policies in late May and simmered for much of June in several Turkish cities. Four people were killed and some 7,500 wounded in the police crackdown, the Turkish Medical Association has said.

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(Reporting by Ayla Jean Yackley, editing by Mark Heinrich)

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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2020 Election

GOPer Joni Ernst booed and peppered with questions about guns at tense Iowa town hall

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In videos uploaded to Twitter, Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) received a chorus of boos and shouts from a town hall crowd after she tried to blame mass shootings on mental health issues, with one person shouting, "Do something!"

According to a report from Iowa Starting Line, the embattled Iowa Senator whose approval numbers have dropped, due in part to President Donald Trump, was pressed by one local teacher about changing gun laws so she can get back to the job she was hired for.

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Activism

‘That is ridiculous’: Andrew Gillum obliterates Santorum for claiming guns aren’t ‘problem’ in mass shootings

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CNN contributor Andrew Gillum called conservative pundit Rick Santorum "ridiculous" on Sunday for suggesting that guns are not the problem in mass shootings.

During a CNN discussion on gun control, Santorum criticized calls from Democratic candidates for the government to buy back assault-style weapons in addition to banning them.

"The truth is something has to give," Gillum said. "The stranglehold that the NRA seems to have over Congress, over Washington, D.C., in my opinion, is insane. How can we put the priorities of one interest group above the safety, the security of the American people?"

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Activism

WATCH: Tenn. lawmaker seeks to ‘destroy Satan’ by banning abortions in cases of rape and incest

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The sponsor of a bill that would effectively ban all abortions in Tennessee said that he hopes to "destroy Satan."

Sen. Mark Pody (R) made the remarks at a Monday prayer gathering before debate on the bill.

"I'm not against any colleagues, whether they're standing with me or not," Pody said. "I'm against Satan and I'm standing with God."

"We will not back up, we will not back down, we will not turn around," he added. "We face the enemy. We have no protection when we run. We have no protection for our back."

The Tennessee ban would take effect once "a viable pregnancy is presumed to exist or has been confirmed," effectively banning all abortions in the state. There is no exception in the bill for rape or incest.

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