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Turkey’s Arinc Appeals for Calm as Protests Continue

Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc sought to defuse protests that entered a fifth day today, apologizing to victims of excessive police force and saying the government has learned some lessons.

Initial rallies against plans to develop a park in Taksim Square in Istanbul were “rightful and legitimate,” Arinc told reporters in Ankara today. “The excessive use of force against those who were acting with sensitivity on the environment was wrong.” He also said, though, that his administration “won’t bow to pressure that is coming from the streets,” and called on people to withdraw so that the “extreme forces” behind the violence can be dealt with.