A Turkish man has staged an eight-hour silent vigil on Istanbul’s Taksim Square, scene of violent clashes between police and anti-government protesters in recent weeks, inspiring hundreds of others to follow his lead.
Erdem Gunduz said he wanted to take a stand against police stopping demonstrations near the square, Dogan news agency reported.
He stood silently, facing the Ataturk Cultural Centre which was draped in Turkish flags and a portrait of Turkey’s founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, from 6pm.
By 2am, when the police moved in, about 300 people had joined him. Ten people, who refused to be moved on by police, were detained.
Gunduz, swiftly dubbed “standing man” on social media in Turkey, inspired similar protests elsewhere in Istanbul as well as in the capital Ankara and the city of Izmir on the Aegean coast.
The silent protests were in stark contrast to demonstrations at the weekend, which saw some of the fiercest clashes so far when police fired tear gas and water cannon to clear thousands from Taksim Square.
1. vigil n.
守夜祈禱 (shou3 ye4 qi2 dao3)
例: The night before he was scheduled to be executed, the group held a candlelight vigil for him outside the prison.
2. follow someone’s lead v .phr.
跟隨,效法某人 (gen1 sui2, xiao4 fa3 mo3 ren2)
例: John followed his father’s lead and became a lawyer.
3. demonstration n.
示威 ((shi4 wei1)
例: Tens of thousands of people took part in a demonstration in Taipei last Saturday.