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Young protester loses eye from rubber bullet

  • 20/06/2013 --
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One young man, who was shot with a rubber bullet during the police intervention in the demonstrations in Taksim Gezi Park last week, lost his sight in one eye but counts himself lucky for being alive.

His family, however, are demanding justice and want those responsible to be brought to justice immediately.

“I am thankful that I am alive. But I was unlucky that I lost my eye,” said Mahir Gür, 22-year-old university student, said in an interview with Hürriyet Daily News yesterday.

On June 11, he was shot by a rubber bullet in his left eye and broke his left cheekbone. Three protesters and one policeman have died during the countrywide protests so far.

“I went to Gezi to find my friends. It was the first time I went there [since the demonstrations started.] Around five minutes after I went there, the police intervention started and the police shot me with the rubber bullet,” said Gür, adding that it was the first time he had been to Taksim since the protests started. He said his friends took him to hospital while he was passing in and out of consciousness.

Gür was discharged from the hospital on June 17, after staying at the hospital for a week and having surgery on his eye. He said he was told by the doctors that he had a very low chance of being able to see with his left eye again and that he had to undergo at least two more surgeries.

He was still suffering the trauma of the incident, hardly speaking about his emotions, mostly standing silent and sad. He said he can no longer watch the TV and only gets updated about the incidents when his friends call him. Gür said he was not member of any group, party or organization and went to Gezi Park for the fate of the park as well as for the freedoms and against the pressures.

Hurriyet Daily News