Published on March 19th, 2009 | by Alex Felsinger

Police Spray Water Cannons at World Water Forum Protesters

Apparently Turkish police have a biting sense of irony: they’ve sprayed protesters at the World Water Forum with high-pressured water cannons.


The forum, which occurs every three years, is supposed to focus on ways to eliminate water poverty across the globe, but protesters believe the forum takes a heavy-handed approach and supports construction of dangerous and environmentally-disastrous large dams.

Two activists with the non-profit group International Rivers were deported from Turkey earlier this week for doing nothing but stand up with a banner reading “No risky dams.” But while these activists were ticket-holding forum attendees, other protesters gathered outside the forum before it began.

The police said that the water cannons were the most “cost effective” way to respond to these protesters. While of course I do not condone any act of violence against people merely expressing themselves, if the cops were going to do it anyway, this was a wonderful weapon choice.

Tear gas? $7,350.

Water cannons? $235.

Using water cannons against people protesting water poverty? Priceless.

[Via International Rivers]
Photo Credit: Isbi Armor on Flickr under Creative Commons license.

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About the Author

is primarily concerned with animal welfare, wildlife conservation, and environmental justice. As a freelance writer in San Francisco, he leads a deliberately simplistic and thrifty lifestyle, yet still can’t help gawking at the newest green gadgets and zero-emission concept cars.

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  • WobAttintybog


    Aid poverty situations nationwide for free! All you have to do is complete surveys, or play free games on the help poverty internet site, and their supporters will instantly transfer funds to establishments whose only goal is to aid poverty situations countrywide! This is a new experiment and it seems to work, because you won’t have to pay to aid, but funds will even so be transferred to the ones in need.

    Tnx for registering this!

  • anonymous

    So, you protest at the world water forum and you get water thrown at you. Is there a beer forum I can protest at?

  • janiceenberg

    I am a newbie to this forum site. I hope you guys help me always if I fall in trouble. And I’m really happy to join with you. Pls share your valuable tips and tricks with me.

  • lng

    poverty schmoverty…

  • Alex Felsinger


    Obviously the machine itself cost more than $235. The prices are estimates on the cost to operate them at these protests provided by police.


  • The water cannon vehicle does not cost US $235. It costs $400,000. The water is free

  • lng

    this is bull, all this green stuff, just my personal opinion

  • Dracoda

    Heck yeah why waste water they should have sprayed lead

  • dave

    @olivia: OHHHHHHH, so THAT’S why it’s ironic! Thank God you were here to explain that to me. I’ve been trying to join the dots for several hours now, but just couldn’t work it out.

    Sarcasm at your pointless +1 aside, the protesters had all the running water they needed… they were protesting *global* water poverty, not their own. It’s all there in the article. Giving them a few bottles of water wouldn’t have sated them at all.

  • olivia

    this is just sad. had the turkish government given them all the water that they used in the cannons, they would have probably settled down and been content.

  • Makes me have second thoughts about my plans to protest at the world fire forum.

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