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By Brahma Chellaney
Beijing's creeping aggression signals a challenge to U.S. presence in the Asian Pacific
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Taksim Square
In a landmark trial, scores of people — including Turkey's former military chief, politicians and journalists — were convicted on Monday of plotting to overthrow Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government soon after it came to power in 2002.
Turkish riot police fired tear gas and water cannons on Sunday at demonstrators trying to return to Istanbul's main square, maintaining a hard line against rekindled protests as the prime minister's supporters prepared to rally across town.
Turkey certainly has been a reliable ally of the United States for many decades. Compared with Egypt and other countries in the Middle East, its democracy is stable and its economy is growing. But celebrating Recep Tayyip Erdogan's Turkey as a model seems not quite right.
Hundreds of police donned riot gear Tuesday and stormed through barricades in Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, to oust protesters who've occupied the property for a week.
In a series of increasingly belligerent speeches to cheering supporters Sunday, Turkey's prime minister demanded an end to the 10-day anti-government protests that have spread across the country, saying those who do not respect the government will pay.
Turkey's prime minister took a combative stance on his closely watched return to the country early Friday, telling supporters who thronged to greet him that the protests that have swept the country must come to an end.
Political unrest in the streets of Turkey poses a threat to the country's long-standing reputation as a financial bulwark in the otherwise chaotic Middle East, financial analysts say.
In a scene reminiscent of the Arab Spring, thousands of people on Saturday flooded Istanbul's main square after a crackdown on an anti-government protest turned city streets into a battlefield clouded by tear gas.
Turkish warplanes mistakenly killed 35 smugglers and other villagers in an operation targeting Kurdish rebels in Iraq, a senior official said Thursday, one of the largest one-day civilian death tolls during Turkey's 27-year drive against the guerrillas.