Riot police fired tear gas and pellets to disperse demonstrators participating in the annual Gay Pride in Istanbul. About 150 people had gathered around the Taksim Square on Sunday.
The shuttered Ataturk Cultural Center, which played a key role in the 2013 protests, will be demolished as part of the project. Erdogan compared the opera house's opponents to those who hinder the fight against terror.
Turkish authorities have banned the German LGBTI Film Days festival, citing public security concerns. The Ankara event, which is supported by the German Embassy, was to start on Thursday.
Organizers of a gay pride parade in Istanbul had said they would go ahead with a march despite a ban. But using tear gas and rubber bullets, police prevented large numbers of people from gathering together.
All LGBTI gender events have been banned in Ankara, just days after authorities barred a German gay film festival. The governor's office in the Turkish capital cited the need to "provide peace and security."
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