Protests Jeopardize Turkey's Bid to Host Olympics - Istanbul Mayor
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The continuing protests in Turkey are harming Istanbul's bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics, the city's Mayor Kadir Topbas said on Monday (June 24).

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SHOWS: ISTANBUL, TURKEY (JUNE 24, 2013) (ISTANBUL MAYOR'S OFFICE HANDOUT - ACCESS ALL) 1. (SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) ISTANBUL MAYOR KADIR TOPBAS SAYING: "The 2020 Olympics are on the agenda, the race has entered its decision stages and we have only two months left. If these incidents, hurdles will continue, the 2020 Olympics will remain a dream. Who will be the loser? We will lose as a nation, Istanbul will lose. Who will win? Everybody knows the answer but we will be losing and we will be facing troubles" ISTANBUL, TURKEY (JUNE 22, 2013) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 2. TOPSHOT OF WATER CANNON SPRAYING ON PROTESTERS/ PROTESTERS RUNNING AWAY 3. GROUNDSHOT OF WATER CANNON SPRAYING ON PROTESTERS 4. VARIOUS OF POLICE DISPERSING THE CROWD DURING PARK DEMONSTRATIONS STORY: The continuing protests in Turkey are harming Istanbul's bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics, the city's Mayor Kadir Topbas said on Monday (June 24). "2020 Olympics are on the agenda, the race entered its decision stages and we have only two months left. If these incidents, hurdles will continue, 2020 Olympics will remain as a dream. Who will be the loser? We will lose as a nation, Istanbul will lose. Who will win? Everybody knows the answer but we will be losing and we will be facing troubles" he told a news conference. Topbas's remarks came as an International Olympic Committee report on the three cities hoping to host the 2020 Summer Olympics indicated there was no clear favourite among the bids from Madrid, Tokyo and Istanbul as the race entered its closing stages. Three months ahead of the vote to decide the winning bid, an evaluation commission report drafted after visits to the cities earlier this year and released on Tuesday had all three hopefuls locked in a dead-heat. According to the report the struggling Spanish economy was of no risk to Madrid, security in Turkey did not threaten Istanbul's chances and Tokyo's low public support was offset by praise for a solid bid and financial strength. The winning city will be selected at the 125th IOC Session in Buenos Aires, Argentina in September. Istanbul, bidding for the fifth time in the last six votes, received a thumbs-up for government backing, wide public support and the capability of delivering construction for the Games Travel times to venues, however, were seen as somewhat optimistic given the large city's traffic issues. The report was drafted before the start of nationwide protests against the government of Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan. The unrest began at the end of May when police used force against campaigners opposed to plans to redevelop a central Istanbul park. The report noted the country could successfully safeguard the event despite security problems with neighbouring Syria and the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) guerrillas. The issue of the Turkey protests are expected to be a talking point at the IOC Olympics bids meeting in Lausanne next month.