Turkish police gear up for New Year’s Eve, Taksim Square closed to traffic

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Turkish police will be on the streets on New Year's eve, sometimes under cover of Santa Claus. PHOTO: NTV

Police in Turkey’s largest city of İstanbul on Monday tightened security measures a few hours before New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Turkish media outlets reported that approximately 40,000 police officers will be on duty in İstanbul alone on New Year’s Eve, while the city’s main Taksim Square has been surrounded by barriers. Members of the public who want to welcome the new year in Taksim and the adjacent Gezi Park will reportedly be subject to a search before entering the area.

Two years ago today, 39 people were killed in an attack at Istanbul’s famous Reina nightclub carried out by an Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) terrorist.

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