Erdogan fires university rector after 6 months of student protests

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07/14/2021

ISTANBUL: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday replaced a top Istanbul university rector whose controversial appointment led to months of student-led protests against his rule. Erdogan appointed Melih Bulu as rector of Bogazici University in January but was immediately met by anger over the president’s influence on educational institutions. But in an announcement published by the Official Gazette, Erdogan fired Bulu. The president provided no reason for his dismissal, and did not name a replacement. Protests by students and academics began almost immediately in January and continued to the present day. Dozens were detained while others were subject to police raids as officers emboldened by Erdogan’s anger responded heavy-handedly to the protests. While the demonstrations were not as largely attended as before, Bogazici academics showed they remained deeply unhappy by continuing to regularly turn their backs in protest in front of the rector’s office.

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