Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc threatened to send the army on any remaining protestors in Gezi Park or nearby Taksim Square after Turkish police used tear gas and water cannons to clear to park over the weekend. In response to the violent eviction, several labor unions representing approximately 800,000 workers, including doctors, engineers and dentists, have gone on a one-day strike.
“Our police, our security forces are doing their jobs. If it's not enough then the gendarmes will do their jobs. If that's not enough ... we could even use elements of the Turkish Armed Forces,” Arinc said in an interview with Turkey’s A Haber channel.
Interior Minister Muammer Guler warned of similar actions and said the strike was “illegal,” Al-Jazeera reports. "I am calling on public workers and laborers to not participate in unlawful demonstrations -- otherwise, they will bear the legal consequences," Guler said. "Our police will be on duty as usual."
The two main unions involved are the Confederation of Public Workers' Unions, or KESK, and Confederation of Progressive Trade Unions, or DISK, the Independent reports. Police have remained stationed at Taksim Square since it was cleared. More reports of police firing tear gas came out of Ankara, Turkey’s capital, overnight on Monday. Six-hundred people were arrested on Sunday, AFP reports.
Maya covers the U.N., Europe, and the Middle East for IBTimes. She joined the company in July 2012 after having previously worked with DNAinfo.com and Gawker.