June 11 - Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan struck a defiant note on Tuesday, declaring he would not yield to protesters, as riot police tried to regain control of a central Istanbul square at the heart of anti-government demonstrations. Mana Rabiee reports.
A defiant tone from the Turkish Prime Minister and his ruling party. Tayyip Erdogan told political supporters in Ankara Tuesday the nationwide protests against his government were engineered by vandals and terrorist elements. (SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) TURKISH PRIME MINISTER, TAYYIP ERDOGAN, SAYING: "The efforts to distort Turkey's image have been put into place with a systematic plan. Turkey's power and reputation have been targeted during this process." Meanwhile in central Istanbul, another day of clashes between police and protesters. Riot police briefly tried to regain control of Taksim Square, the epicenter of anti-government protests that's left three people killed and 5,000 injured. In Ankara, Erdogan warned his patience is running out. (SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) TURKISH PRIME MINISTER, TAYYIP ERDOGAN, SAYING: "I urge the young people, who I believe are there with sincere feelings, to put an end to this protest and I call on those who insist on continuing. This is over. We won't put up with this any longer." But there's no line in the sand just yet. Erdogan has reportedly agreed to meet with protest leaders. A meeting is expected Wednesday.