Image: Turkish riot police disperse protesters
Mustafa Ozer  /  AFP - Getty Images
Turkish riot police disperse anti-IMF protesters in Istanbul's Taksim Square on Tuesday.
updated 10/6/2009 10:21:29 AM ET 2009-10-06T14:21:29

Turkish police used water cannons, tear gas and pepper spray on Tuesday to disperse hundreds of demonstrators, protesting against the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank held in Istanbul.

Some masked protesters shattered the windows of a McDonald's restaurant and banks and damaged vehicles as they ran into the streets behind Istanbul's Taksim Square, which is less than a half a mile from the venue of the IMF and World Bank meeting.

Thousands of police wearing gas masks and protective gear erected barriers around the venue and detained dozens of protesters — mostly members of small leftist parties or labor unions. CNN-Turk television said some foreign protesters were also involved.

Police helicopters hovered above the crowds.

Video: Police, protesters clash Clouds of tear gas filled the air above Taksim Square while firefighters battled a blaze apparently set by protesters. Passers-by and reporters were also affected by the tear gas.

Several shop owners shuttered their shops along the famous tourist route of Istiklal Street, which was deserted in a matter of minutes as patrons hid inside the shops or bazaars.

Last week, a student journalist hurled a shoe at IMF Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn as the finance official answered questions at a university in Istanbul. The shoe missed its target.

Turkey and the International Monetary Fund are engaged in slow-moving talks about a new loan deal that could boost investor confidence, but Turkey has been reluctant to cut spending and implement austerity measures.

More on: Turkey

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Photos: Protests in Istanbul

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  1. A protester throws a molotov cocktail during clashes with Turkish riot police during a rally against the International Monetary Fund in Istanbul, Turkey on Tuesday, Oct. 6th. (Tolga Bozoglu / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Turkish riot police use a water cannon to disperse protesters during an anti-International Monetary Fund and World Bank protest on Taksim square in Istanbul. (Mustafa Ozer / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Protesters erect a makeshift barricade against Turkish riot police in central Istanbul. (Osman Orsal / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. A riot police officer extinguishes a fire set by protesters during clashes in central Istanbul. (Osman Orsal / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Protesters smash the windows of a bank during a demonstration against the International Monetary Fund and World Bank annual meetings in Taksim square in Istanbul. (Bulent Kilic / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Protesters run away from tear gas fired by Turkish riot police. (Mustafa Ozer / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Turkish riot police throw tear gas at protesters in Istanbul, Turkey. (Tolga Bozoglu / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. A protester uses a slingshot against Turkish riot police on Taksim square in Istanbul, Turkey. (Mustafa Ozer / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Turkish riot police disperse protesters during a anti-International Monetary Fund and World Bank protest in Istanbul. (Mustafa Ozer / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
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