The death of Berkin Elvan has brought more protests – U.S. Embassy Warning

Below is a message from:

Embassy of the United States of America

Ankara, Turkey

Security Message for U.S. Citizens – Protests in Turkey

March 11, 2014

The Embassy of the United States of America anticipates demonstrations in Ankara, Istanbul and Izmir and other cities in Turkey following the death today (March 11) of Berkin Elvan, a teenage boy who was hit in the head by a tear gas canister fired by police during the Gezi protests in 2013.  While exact locations and the number of demonstrators are unknown at this time, protest activities have already begun in and around Taksim Square in Istanbul and around Guven Park, Kugulu Park, and Middle East Technical University (ODTU) campus in Ankara.  As of 3:15 p.m. on March 11, Eskisehir Yolu (highway) in Ankara is blocked by protesting marchers.

Demonstrations are also expected March 12 throughout Turkey, especially in the vicinity of Berkin’s funeral service in Istanbul.  The service will take place at 12:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 12 at Okmeydani Cemevi.  The funeral procession will then walk to Ferikoy cemetery from Sisli Square at 3:00 p.m.  The Embassy advises U.S. citizens to remain vigilant and avoid protests as the situation remains fluid and unpredictable.

U.S. citizens are reminded that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.  Review your personal security plans, remain aware of your surroundings, including local events, and monitor local news stations for updates.  Maintain a high level of vigilance, take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security, and follow instructions of local authorities.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens and nationals traveling to or residing in Turkey enroll in the State Department’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  U.S. citizens and nationals without Internet access may enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.  Enrolling signs you up to receive updated information about areas abroad and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or consulate to communicate with you or your designated contact in case of emergency.

Current information on safety and security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or a regular toll line at +1-202-501-4444 for callers from other countries.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

You can also stay up to date by bookmarking our Bureau of Consular Affairs website, which contains the Country Specific Information for Turkey, current Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts as well as the Worldwide Caution.  For additional information, refer to the “Traveler’s Checklist” on the State Department’s website.  Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook as well.

Contact information for the U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Turkey:

The U.S. Embassy in Ankara is located at 110 Ataturk Boulevard, tel: (90)(312) 455-5555, fax (90)(312) 468-6131.

The U.S. Consulate General in Istanbul is located at 2 Uçsehitler Sokaği, 34460, Istinye, Sariyer, tel: (90)(212) 335-9000, fax (90)(212) 335-9102.

The U.S. Consulate in Adana is located at 212 Girne Bulvarıı, Güzelevler Mahallesi, Yüreğir, tel: (90)(322) 346-6262, fax (90)(322) 346-7916.

The Consular Agency in Izmir can be reached at tel: (90)(232) 464-8755, fax (90)(232) 464-8916.

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