Soma Mines Tragedy: Turkey burning in protests after police clashes with mourners
Ankara, Istanbul and Soma were hot spots where clashes have erupted across to protest tragic mining accident that left 245 people killed in the western Turkish town of Soma on Tuesday.
Soma Holding that is operating mines where accident has taken place is the parent company of Soma Coal has alleged close ties with the AKP government. Melike Doğru, the wife of the general director of Soma Holding Mine Enterprises, is a councilor from the government party.
opponent of government claim that Soma Coal also provided charity coal bags which were distributed by the AKP during the previous local elections.
Relatives of the dead miners are rioting against Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan who is already facing corruption charges in past. Turkey has become a dangerous country for miners due to lack of safety rules and condition for miners. Soma is 120 km (75 miles) northeast of the Aegean coastal city of Izmir. Reports from Turkey claimed that Prime Minister Erdogan was forced to shelter in a local supermarket to escape the enraged crowds during his visit to Soma today when he confronted with a spontaneous protest by local people. Protestors accused Erdogan of being a murderer and a thief. Riot police used water cannon on the demonstrators as they approached the ruling NKP party headquarters. Protesters are blaming the ruling AK Party (AKP) government on the mining disaster in western Turkey,
In Ankara, students marched in front of energy ministry chanting anti-government slogans and hurling rocks. Law enforcers responded by deploying tear gas and water cannon against the protesters.
Protests also swept through Istanbul, with people gathering in the city metro and outside the headquarters of the company which owns the mine. Graffiti alleging that the company had committed murder was daubed on the walls of the Soma Holdings office, while others painted their faces black in solidarity with the miners.