Protestors assault US air base in Türkiye

Lazy eyes listen


On Sunday, police used tear gas and water cannons to disperse a pro-Palestinian demonstration at Turkey’s Incirlik Air Base. Earlier in the day, a convoy of anti-US and anti-Israel protesters arrived at the American base.

Cars and buses bearing Palestinian and Turkish flags left Istanbul on Friday en route to the base, which is located near the Syrian border just outside the city of Adana. The convoy was organised by the Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH), a Turkish non-governmental organisation that called on its supporters to “surround” the base upon its arrival.

Prior to the protest, security at the facility was increased, and local police fired tear gas canisters into the crowd before the facility could be surrounded.

Some protesters chanted pro-Hamas slogans, Türkiye’s Daily Ummah news site reported. Tear gas, rubber bullets, and water cannons were used to drive the crowd away from the American base, according to the outlet

Following the crackdown, IHH organisers allegedly requested that the crowd disperse. There were no reports of casualties at the time.

Following the launch of Israel’s air campaign against Hamas last month, protests erupted across Turkey. While the Israeli government claims that it is targeting the Gaza-based militant group, according to UN figures, 67% of those killed in the bombing campaign have been women and children. Since then, Israeli tanks and troops have moved into the enclave, and more than 9,700 Palestinians have died, according to the most recent Gaza Health Ministry figures.

More than 1,400 people were killed in Israel during the same time period, the majority of whom were killed during Hamas’ October 7 attack on the Jewish state.

The United States has provided arms, ammunition, and funding to Israel, as well as deploying two aircraft carrier groups to the region. Despite the fact that Turkey is a NATO ally of the United States, Ankara has recalled its ambassador to Israel, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused the Israeli military of war crimes and cut ties with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

“I believe that we should stop Israel, which appears to be completely out of its mind and lost it,” Erdogan declared on Thursday, adding that Ankara would “ensure that those responsible for war crimes in Gaza face justice.”

Since the mid-1950s, the United States has used Incirlik Air Base. The facility has served as a staging area for reconnaissance flights over the years.