Turkey jails 24 Istanbul airport workers pending trial after protests

Turkish police have detained hundreds of workers protesting over labor conditions at Istanbul’s new airport, a giant project championed by President Tayyip Erdogan and due to open next month. (File/AFP)
Updated 20 September 2018
0

Turkey jails 24 Istanbul airport workers pending trial after protests

  • Istanbul’s governor said on Sunday more than 400 people were initially detained for taking part in the protests
  • A total of 43 people among those detained were sent to an Istanbul court to rule on what action would be taken and it released 19 of them subject to judicial monitoring

ISTANBUL: A Turkish court has jailed pending trial 24 people involved in protests over work conditions at Istanbul’s new airport last week, broadcaster CNN Turk said on Wednesday.
The airport is a centerpiece of a 15-year construction boom under President Tayyip Erdogan. It has an initial planned capacity of 90 million passengers a year, making it one of the world’s biggest airports.
Istanbul’s governor said on Sunday more than 400 people were initially detained for taking part in the protests. Work resumed at the airport on Monday with a heavy police and gendarmerie presence, according to labor unions.
A total of 43 people among those detained were sent to an Istanbul court to rule on what action would be taken and it released 19 of them subject to judicial monitoring, CNN Turk said.
The 24 formally arrested and remanded in custody faced provisional charges such resisting police, damaging public property and contravening the law governing protests, it said.
Workers have long complained about food, housing and work safety conditions at the construction site, which unions have likened to a concentration camp.
In February, Turkey’s labor ministry said 27 workers had died at the airport since the start of work in 2015, mainly from accidents or health problems. Protests started on Friday after a shuttle bus accident injured 17 workers.
Airport operator IGA said on Sunday work at the airport was on schedule and the planned Oct. 29 opening would not be delayed. Steps had been taken to improve working conditions and living quarters, which workers say were infested with bedbugs, it said.


Russia says kills 88,000 Syria rebels

Updated 20 October 2018
0

Russia says kills 88,000 Syria rebels

  • Russia launched strikes in support of President Bashar Assad’s regime in September 2015
  • Russian air forces have carried out more than 40,000 bombing missions, hitting about 120,000 targets

MOSCOW: Russia’s defense minister said Saturday that almost 88,000 rebels had been killed in Syria in the three years since Moscow’s intervention to back government forces.
“Over the course of the operation, a total of more than 87,500 rebels have been eliminated, 1,411 settlements have been liberated and more than 95 percent of Syria’s territory,” Shoigu was quoted as saying at a forum in Singapore in a ministry statement.
“Most of the rebels have been liquidated,” Shoigu said.
Britain-based war monitor the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says close to 365,000 people have been killed during the seven-year civil war.
Russia launched strikes in support of President Bashar Assad’s regime in September 2015.
Russian air forces have carried out more than 40,000 bombing missions, hitting about 120,000 targets of “terrorist” infrastructure, Shoigu said.
The defense minister said that “Syrian armed forces currently control territory where more than 90 percent of the population lives.”