Senior correspondent
Daren's Feed
Mar 22, 2014

Turks face new Internet restrictions after Twitter block

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turks faced fresh difficulties in accessing the Internet on Saturday after the government blocked access to Twitter, the site where tweets on a corruption scandal have angered Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan.

Twitter was blocked late on Thursday, hours after Erdogan vowed to “wipe out” the social media service. Leading international condemnation, the White House said the Twitter ban undermined democracy and free speech.

Mar 17, 2014

Turkish cleric says Erdogan crackdown worse than army coup era

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen said a crackdown on his followers by Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan was “ten times worse” than anything meted out after coups by the secularist military.

Erdogan has accused Gulen’s Hizmet (“Service”) network, which has built quiet influence in the police and judiciary over decades, of orchestrating a graft investigation which has grown into one of the biggest challenges of his 11-year rule.

Mar 13, 2014

Turkey’s Erdogan condemns protesters as deaths fuel tensions

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan condemned anti-government protesters on Thursday as “charlatans” bent on sowing chaos in the run-up to local elections after Turkey’s worst civil unrest since mass protests last summer.

Two people died during protests on Wednesday, including a police officer in eastern Turkey who suffered a heart attack and a 22-year-old man shot in Istanbul in an apparent stand-off with a group of anti-government protesters.

Mar 13, 2014

Turkey’s Erdogan condemns protesters after boy’s funeral

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan accused protesters on Thursday of trying to sow chaos to influence local elections after Turkey’s worst day of civil unrest since anti-government demonstrations swept the nation last summer.

Late on Wednesday, a man in Istanbul was shot dead and a police officer in eastern Turkey suffered a fatal heart attack. Erdogan said demonstrators had “burned and destroyed” offices of his ruling AK Party in Istanbul.

Mar 11, 2014

Death of Turkish boy hurt in protests rekindles unrest across country

ISTANBUL/ANKARA (Reuters) – Protesters clashed with police in cities across Turkey on Tuesday after the death of a 15-year-old boy who was hit in the head by a tear-gas canister during anti-government demonstrations last summer.

Police unleashed water cannon and tear gas on thousands of demonstrators, another pre-election headache for Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan as he battles a corruption scandal that has become one of the biggest challenges of his decade in power.

Mar 7, 2014

Turkey’s former army chief freed from prison

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Former army chief Ilker Basbug was released from a life sentence following a court decision on Friday, adding to uncertainty over the fate of court cases trying coup plots against Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan.

The decision to release the former general came after Thursday’s constitutional court ruling that Basbug’s incarceration for his alleged role in the ‘Ergenekon’ conspiracy to overthrow the government violated his rights, as the court trying him had failed to publish a detailed verdict on the case.

Mar 7, 2014

Turkey local election holds key to Kurdish peace talks

DIYARBAKIR, Turkey, March 7 (Reuters) – The face of jailed
Kurdish rebel chief Abdullah Ocalan briefly beamed down from
billboards in southeast Turkey until police tore down the
posters, a mark of official unease over his enduring influence
among Kurds as local elections loom.

Ocalan’s supporters see the vote as a make-or-break moment
for stalled peace talks aimed at ending 30 years of conflict
between Ocalan’s separatist fighters and the Turkish state.

Mar 7, 2014

Erdogan says Turkey may ban Facebook, YouTube over wiretaps

ISTANBUL, March 7 (Reuters) – Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan
has threatened to ban Facebook and YouTube in Turkey in
an attempt to stop political foes anonymously posting audio
recordings purportedly exposing corruption and other
malpractices in his inner circle.

In the latest recording, released on YouTube late Thursday,
Erdogan is purportedly heard berating a newspaper owner over the
telephone about an article and suggesting the journalists be
sacked, in comments that will further stoke concerns over media
freedom and Erdogan’s authoritarian style of leadership.

Mar 5, 2014

Turkey’s Erdogan says calls with world leaders may have been bugged

ISTANBUL, March 5 (Reuters) – Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip
Erdogan, embroiled in a scandal over leaked voice recordings,
said on Wednesday his sensitive conversations with other world
leaders may have been tapped as part of a campaign by his
political enemies to discredit him.

Erdogan is locked in a power struggle with U.S.-based
Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, a former ally he says is behind
a stream of “fabricated” recordings aired on the Internet and
purportedly revealing corruption in his inner circle.

Feb 27, 2014

Gala’s Mancini rates Chelsea narrow favorites to progress

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Roberto Mancini rates Chelsea narrow favorites to reach the Champions League quarter-finals despite Galatasaray finishing the better side in the first-leg 1-1 draw.

The Turkish side’s manager was relieved his open tactics in the first 25 minutes on Wednesday did not result in more than the one goal his team conceded.

    • About Daren

      "I am based in Istanbul where I cover a broad range of financial and general news. I joined Reuters in Ankara in 1996 and left Turkey to work in London in 2000. I returned to Istanbul in 2003."
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