The European Parliament adopted resolution on Gezi Park protests in Turkey

General Assembly of the European Parliament accepted Thursday a resolution on Turkey in regards to Taksim Gezi Park protests.

Submitted jointly by the Christian Democrats, Socialists, Liberals, Greens and Conservatives, the EP resolution urged Turkey to consult with the public over issues related to city and urban development plans.

The non-binding resolution called Turkey to balance economic development with social, environmental, cultural and historical concerns and asked the country to hold environmental impact assessment reports in all projects.

The resolution also expressed concern over "the disproportionate and excessive use of force" by police in Gezi Park incidents and urged Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to assume "a unifying and conciliatory position" over issues in the country.

"Moderate approaches" of Turkish President Abdullah Gul and Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc during protests and their apology were welcomed by the EP.

The resolution also called on Turkey to strengthen democratic institutes, rule of law and fundamental freedoms as well as the priority of individual rights, and the continuous training of police officers and judicial authorities on adhering to the international standards and struggling against torture and maltreatment.

The resolution also said Turkish authorities should assure freedom of religion and conscience and social richness in addition to protecting secular life styles. 

 Emphasizing the importance of freedom of thought, the resolution claimed freedom of press deteriorated and media was prone to self-censorship in Turkey. 

The EP resolution said the parliament was deeply upset that several television channels were fined by the Turkish broadcasting authority for their coverage of Taksim Gezi park protests. 

"Most of the media companies are owned by big holding companies which have various economic interests" the resolution said, urging Turkey to draft a new press law as well as to regulate media ownership.

Adapted from Anadolu