Turkey's Woman in the Red Dress

by Neslihan Sen
published in MER268

On June 1, the day after the brutal police attack to disperse the occupation of Gezi Park, thousands more protesters descended upon Taksim Square in central Istanbul. By the end of the week, demonstrators filled the plaza completely, with those in the park itself behind barricades should the police mount another raid. The atmosphere reminded many of a carnival, with people sharing food and dancing to music as they chanted slogans in the shade of the towering trees. It was an anxious occasion all the same -- two protester tents were designated as infirmaries. Everyone wore masks or scarves around their necks to ward off tear gas and many carried first aid items for the volunteer health personnel.

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