Fri, Feb 04, 2011 | The Rubin Report | By Barry Rubin
Turkey’s Government: Cheer Egypt’s Demonstrations, Suppress Those at Home
Labor unions marched to protest the reduction of workers’ rights in Ankara. The government declared the demonstration illegal, gassed demonstrators, and police attacked the demonstrators. Opposition members of parliament were among those injured.
This event came one day after the government spokesman said, of Egypt, that governments must listen to the people. Since 2007, the stealth-Islamist AKP government has banned anti-government protests and broken up those that attempted to demonstrate.
Thu, Feb 03, 2011
Police try to stop protestors’ march to parliament
Members of labor unions as well as workers who converged to the capital Ankara from across Turkey, gathered at a park in Ankara. They closed an avenue in the city center, and tried to march to the parliamentary building by chanting slogans against the government and the police.
Police blocked the main road leading to the building with a line of vans and used tear-gas and pressurized water to push them back while demonstrators hurled sticks and stone at police. Some demonstrators as well as passersby and deputies from the main opposition party were injured during the clashes.
Turkey’s parliament has currently been debating a package of assorted legislation which includes measures pardoning penalties for unpaid taxes or fines, allowing employers to employ interns and apprentices for four months without pay.
Read full story: Cumhuriyet.
And here’s Prime Minister Erdogan’s “Marie Antoinette” moment the next day after another labor demonstration:
Fri, Feb 04, 2011
Turkish PM’s tough words on protests stir up northern Cyprus
“They have no right to hold such a demonstration. The lowest-level civil servants of [northern Cyprus] receive a monthly salary of close to 10,000 Turkish Liras. My undersecretary gets roughly 5,000 liras. The gentlemen are protesting without shame.”
In remarks published in some Turkish newspapers Friday, Erdoğan lashed out at the protests in northern Cyprus, urging the Turkish Cypriot government to take a clear stance.
“They [protesters] are telling Turkey to get out and leave. Who do you think you are? What Greece is doing there is the same as what Turkey is doing there strategically. It is meaningful that those who are fed by our country are going that way,” the prime minister was quoted as saying while paying an official visit in the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek.
The target of the prime minister’s ire was the “social existence” demonstration held Jan. 28 in northern Cyprus, where a group of protesters unfurled banners reading, “Ankara, get your hand off our shores.” Some even waved Greek Cypriot flags.
Read full story: Hurriyetdailynews.
 Turkish-language coverage: “ANKARA’DA ‘TORBA’ DAYAĞI”, Milliyet.com.tr ekonomi, 04 Şubat 2011/Feb 04, 2011.
 English article: “Workers to unite in Turkish capital to protest new laws”, Hurriyetdailynews, Tue, Feb 01, 2011.
 Video: “Turkish Protesters Clash With Police”, Wall Street Journal, Thu, Feb 03, 2011.
 Photoblog: “Turkish workers protest draft labor law”, MSNBC, Thu, Feb 03, 2011.
 English article: Police try to stop Protestors’ march to Parliament, Anadolu Agency.
 English article: “Workers protest sack law, scuffle with police in Ankara”, Today’s Zaman, Feb 04, 2011.