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Turkish union says airport protests to continue, some workers released

September 16, 2018 ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkish authorities released 160 construction workers who had demonstrated against labor conditions at Istanbul’s new airport, but hundreds are still detained and protests are likely to continue, a union leader said on Sunday. The airport, a centerpiece of a 15-year construction boom under Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, is due to open late next month. Unions say workers at the site have long complained about conditions, including pay, food and living quarters, as well as safety standards. Protests broke out on Friday after a shuttle bus accident injured 17 workers. Thousands of workers joined the demonstration, which was broken up by police who deployed in riot control vehicles and detained 500 people, one union leader said. Video footage, which the union said was from the construction site, showed hundreds of men chanting: “We are workers, we are right, we will have our way one way or another.” Large labor protests have been rare in Turkey since a state of emergency was imposed following a failed July 2016 coup. It was lifted two months ago after Erdogan’s re-election but his opponents say Turkey’s new executive presidency retains many of the emergency powers. Ozgur Karabulut, general manager…

Source: One America News | Turkish union says airport protests to continue, some workers released

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