14 Jun 2013

Turkish govt and protesters reach 'understandings' over park plan

8:36 pm on 14 June 2013

The Turkish Government says it has reached a series of understandings with protesters after talks hosted by the Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, that lasted several hours.

The protesters, who have been occupying Istanbul's Gezi Park for two weeks, and have at times faced a heavy-handed police response, have not yet agreed to leave the park.

After the talks it was revealed that plans for the redevelopment of the park will remain suspended until a court rules on the legality of the project.

Then, once that court makes its ruling the future of the park may be put to a referendum of people in Istanbul.

The government hopes that these understandings will be enough to make the protesters leave for good.

But the BBC reports, on Friday morning local time tents were still pitched and the occupation was continuing.

The meeting in the capital, Ankara, was the first time Mr Erdogan had met protest organisers directly.

Tayfun Kahraman from the umbrella group Taksim Solidarity described the outcome as "positive".

He said no action would be taken by the government regarding Gezi Park "until all lines of justice are exhausted".