World Bulletin / News Desk
Police in Austria have arrested fourteen people after supporters and opponents of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan clashed on Thursday outside Vienna's Albert Schultz Hall.
Erdogan, who was visiting Austria to address tens of thousands of Turkish expatriates ahead of Turkey's presidential elections in August, which will for the first time be decided by the Turkish people including those living abroad, had said he had "come to win hearts".
However, just as it did in Germany, Erdogan's visit brought with it confrontations between pro- and anti-Erdogan groups, prompting the special police unit, WEGA, to intervene when clashes occurred after a bottle was thrown.
Figures provided by the Austrian authorities stated that around 7,850 protesters had gone to expressed their dismay with Erdogan, in contrast to 13,000 supporters who had some to cheer the Turkish leader.
Although Prime Minister Erdogan, who has emerged the clear winner in three consecutive general elections, has not yet officially declared his presidential candidacy, it is highly anticipated that he will enter the race as the clear favorite to win.
Earlier this week, Turkey's two main opposition parties - the center-left Republican People's Party (CHP) and right-wing National Movement Party (MHP) - announced the former chief of the Organization of Islamic Coopertation and moderate Islamist, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, as a joint candidate to challenge Erdogan's predicted nomination.Last Mod: 21 Haziran 2014, 14:44