Watch: Turkish Police Fire Teargas at BBC Crew

TV crew sent scrambling for cover while filming clashes with Kurdish protesters - when police fired directly at their car.

Ari Soffer,

Turkish police fire teargas at Kurdish protes
Turkish police fire teargas at Kurdish protes
Reuters

Shocking footage posted online shows the moment Turkish police fired teargas canisters deliberately at a BBC crew - shattering their car window even as they attempted to escape the attack.

The video was taken on Sunday at the border with Syria, during a report on the siege of the Kurdish city of Kobane by the Islamic State (ISIS).

Kurds inside Turkey were demonstrating against the Turkish military's decision to block them from joining their brethren in Kobane, who are battling desperately to keep ISIS from taking the city. Turkish police - notorious for their heavy-handed crackdowns on political protests - responded with riot-control measures including teargas and watercannon, and clearly did not take kindly to being filmed either.

Kurds have accused Turkey of aiding Islamist attacks on Kurdish enclaves in Syria, providing them with weapons and even treating wounded fighters from Al Qaeda and ISIS in Turkish medical facilities. Turkey has been embroiled in a decades-long conflict with the Kurds over their demands for greater rights and even independence in Turkish-occupied Kurdistan.

A peace process is meant to be still underway, but anger has boiled over in particular over the deployment of Turkish forces at the border with Syria - not to defend Kobane from an impending slaughter at the hands of ISIS jihadists (as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pledged to do), but to keep Turkish Kurds from rushing to the city's defense.

On Tuesday the anger boiled over after ISIS succeeded in breaching the city's defenses, triggering a last-ditch attempt by Kurdish forces to push them out. But despite US airstrikes on ISIS positions the fall of Kobane appears imminent - and Kurds are livid at Turkey's role.

Clashes between Kurdish protesters and police have erupted in several major Turkish cities, resulting in the death of at least one protester so far - reportedly after being hit in the head by a teargas canister.

Scores of Kurdish activists also managed to occupy the European Parliament building in Brussels in protest of international silence over their people's plight - prompting questions over security at the site,




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