BBC lead provocateur in Turkey: Erdogan

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused the British state-run broadcaster BBC of being part of an international conspiracy to destabilize Turkey.

In an address to parliament in the capital Ankara on Tuesday, Erdogan said that certain foreign powers, international monetary institutions and media outlets are responsible for the anti-government protests that have swept the country since May 31, adding that the unrest was planned to prevent Turkey’s rise.

He stated that foreign media outlets, particularly BBC, were lead provocateurs.

“From the start, some people, internally and externally, have tried to portray the protests as totally innocent and just, and the police of having systematically used force,” Erdogan said. “Certain media in Turkey were lead provocateurs. The foreign media took part in these operations.”

The Turkish prime minister also targeted BBC reporter Selin Girit, accusing her of conspiring against the country.

Erdogan stated that the same conspiracy was also hatched against Brazil, saying Turkey and Brazil both had paid off their debts to the International Monetary Fund.

Over the past two weeks, hundreds of thousands of people have held dozens of demonstrations in Brazil to protest against the billions of dollars being spent on next year’s FIFA World Cup. The protesters have accused the government of wasting money and neglecting health, education, and transport.

On Saturday, Erdogan blamed the waves of anti-government protests in Turkey and Brazil on foreign plots to destabilize the countries.

“The same game is now being played over Brazil,” Erdogan said. “The symbols are the same, the posters are the same, Twitter, Facebook are the same, the international media is the same. They (the protests) are being led from the same center,” he said.

“They are doing their best to achieve in Brazil what they could not achieve in Turkey. It’s the same game, the same trap, the same aim,” Erdogan added.

The unrest in Turkey began on May 31 after police broke up a sit-in held at the Taksim Square to protest against the proposal to demolish Gezi Park.

The protesters say Gezi Park, which is a traditional gathering point for rallies and demonstrations as well as a popular tourist destination, is one of Istanbul’s last green public spaces.

Four people, including a police officer, have died in the clashes and more than 5,000 protesters and 600 police officers have been injured.

Six injured protesters are in critical condition and 11 people have lost their eyesight during the police crackdown.

GJH/AS

This article originally appeared on: Press TV