Locals have been protesting a company's effort to extract mine by “state force” while riot police and military officers intervened demonstrators in Artvin by tear gas and batons on Feb. 16.
In Kadıköy, a group gathered around 19.30 p.m. in central Kadıköy in Istanbul's Anatolian side, and chanted slogans with banners to slam the intervention against locals, activists and MPs guarding the nature.
"We salute the fight in Artvin as nature lovers"
“In the last two days, police and gendarmerie backed by officers from other provinces have been trying to intervene to Cerattepe in Artvin. As people from Artvin living in Istanbul as well as friends of nature, we salute their fight” said the press statement of the Artvin Initiative.
“A mine to be extracted in Artvin would destroy Artvin. We all know that and we will not allow the mining” urged the press statement.
Despite police officers' announce calling on protesters to disperse and not chant “illegal slogans”, the group resumed their folk dance in accompaniment of tulum, a bagpipe-like instrument , originating from the Black Sea regions.
Mine company officials, heavy equipment and containers have headed to the region with accompaniment of riot police and gendarmerie teams deployed from six neighboring provinces. Trucks were deployed in a bid to tow around 300 cars and vehicles of protesters that have blocked the traffic.
NGOs and opposition party MPs have been supporting around three thousand Artvin residents.
“We defend our right to live and we will not stand back. The police and gendarmerie protects the company's vehicles; however, the state should be standing with us” Green Artvin Association Head Nur Neşe Karahan said, speaking on behalf of the protesting citizens.