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Turkey declares curfew in 5 provinces as 12 killed in anti-IS protests

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-10-08 15:10

Turkey declares curfew in 5 provinces as 12 killed in anti-IS protests

 Nine killed in Kurds protest in Turkey

ANKARA/ISTANBUL - Turkish authorities imposed a curfew in five provinces after at least 12 people were killed during anti-Islamic State (IS) protests, local news agency Dogan reported Wednesday.

The curfew was declared in the southeastern provinces of Mardin, Van, Siirt, Batman and Diyarbakir in an effort to disperse demonstrations against the advance of IS militants into Kobane, said the report, adding that schools will be closed in Diyarbakir for one day on Wednesday.

Kobane, also known as Ayn al-Arab, has been attacked by IS militants over the past two weeks. IS fighters have captured hundreds of Kurdish villages around Kobane, forcing tens of thousands of people to flee.

"Protesters should empty the streets or the issue will produce unforeseen results," Turkish Interior Minister Efkan Ala said, warning that "violence will be responded to."

Istanbul has also been witnessing severe clashes between the protesters and the police since Tuesday.

Fresh clashes erupted in Istanbul's district of Taksim, during which at least two people were injured.

Protesters have been staging demonstrations across Turkey since late Monday as Kurds in the country urged the Turkish government to defend Syrian Kurds in the neighboring country, which has witnessed fierce clashes between IS militants and Kurdish fighters for three weeks.

Protesters also blamed Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party for its inactivity over the IS assaults in Kobane.

Last week the Turkish parliament passed a motion to authorize cross-border military actions in Syria and Iraq to fight terrorist groups.

The decision grants the government a one-year mandate to send Turkish troops if necessary to foreign countries for cross-border operations and interventions and to position foreign militaries in Turkey for the same purposes.

High-ranking US officials will hold talks in Turkey on Thursday over a possible military contribution of Ankara to the US-led military coalition fighting the IS.




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