Turkey deports two water activists over water demo

Mar 18, 2009 ISTANBUL (AFP)

Turkish police have deported two environmental activists who staged a protest at the opening of the World Water Forum in Istanbul, diplomats and activists said Wednesday.

A German activist was put on a plane to her country, a German diplomat said, while the environmental group International Rivers said the second protestor was deported to the United States. The two women, both members of International Rivers, were detained after unfurling a banner reading "No more dangerous dams" at the opening of the Fifth World Water Forum in Istanbul on Monday.

The group condemned the police action as "an aggressive response to a peaceful demonstration." Turkey has come under fire from environmentalists over several dam projects, which activists say would destroy natural and historical riches and displace thousands of people.

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