Death of protester in Turkey leads to 4 arrests, including police officer


Protestors gather in Taksim Square on June 4, 2013 in Istanbul, Turkey.


Uriel Sinai

Turkish authorities on Wednesday arrested four people in connection with the death of protester Ali İsmail Korkmaz, according to Al Jazeera

A police officer was among those arrested in the city of Eskişehir, according to Turkey's Hürriyet Daily News

Nineteen-year-old Korkmaz, a university student, died of a brain hemorrhage a month after being severely beaten in a June demonstration, said Al Jazeera. The protest was part of mass unrest then shaking the nation. 

Al Jazeera said the arrests are the first since protests broke out in late May; earlier, a police officer accused of shooting a protester was reportedly released shortly after being detained. 

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At least five people were killed and some 8,000 wounded in weeks of clashes between protesters and police in Turkey, according to Al Jazeera. 

Hürriyet said rescued security camera footage showed a group of people dressed as civilians attacking Korkmaz.

Authorities are said to be pursuing one additional suspect. 

On May 31, riot police fired tear gas to clear demonstrators staging a peaceful protest against plans to redevelop Gezi Park, near Taksim Square in Istanbul.

Their heavy-handed response set off a wave of protests against Erdogan's Justice and Development Party (AKP) that quickly spread across the country, Agence France-Presse reported.

The unrest left five dead, injured more than 8,000 and led to hundreds of arrests before finally easing nearly three weeks later, according to AFP.

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