British tourists warned against travelling to parts of Turkey over riots

Brits warned to steer clear of Turkey after riots

Violent clashes continue in Istanbul and the Foreign Office has warned British tourists to avoid travelling to certain parts of Turkey.

On its website, the Foreign Office said: "Following recent demonstrations in Istanbul and other cities in Turkey in which police used tear gas and water cannons, the possibility of further demonstrations remains high. We advise British nationals to avoid all demonstrations."

On Saturday, Turkish police began pulling out of Istanbul's iconic Taksim Square after a second day of violent clashes between protesters and police over a controversial development project.

Thousands of demonstrators flooded the site as police lifted the barricades around the park and began withdrawing from the square. What started as an outcry against a local development project has snowballed into widespread anger against what critics say is the government's increasingly conservative and authoritarian agenda.

The Guardian reports that Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Erdogan blamed the opposition Republican People's party and social media for provoking the public.

Brits warned to steer clear of Turkey after riots

He said: "There is now a menace which is called Twitter. The best examples of lies can be found there. To me, social media is the worst menace to society."

More than 2,500,000 British holidaymakers travel to Turkey every year.

According to The Sun, an estimated 15,000 Britons were in the country for the school half-term holidays last week.

Most were on the coast but people in Istanbul should avoid central areas, the Association of British Travel Agents advised.
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