"No one can scare us off," he said.
Erdogan delivered his message to a supportive crowd, amid a carnival atmosphere and heavy police security. During his comments, some of his supporters waved the red-and-white Turkish flag as well as the orange, white and blue flag of Erdogan's AK Party.
The festive mood contrasted sharply with the scene here overnight, when Turkish riot police sprayed rowdy anti-government demonstrators with water cannon and fired tear gas at them, arresting nearly a dozen people in the third consecutive night of clashes in the capital.
Erdogan vs. protesters
The unrest began nearly 500 kilometers (311 miles) away, in Istanbul, nearly three weeks ago, when a small group of people turned out to protest government plans to bulldoze the city's Gezi Park and to replace it with a shopping mall housed inside a replica of a 19th-century Ottoman barracks.
Protesters said the plans represented a creeping infringement on their rights in a secular society.
Turkey was founded after secularists in the early 20th century defeated Islamic Ottoman forces, and many modern-day secularists frown on Ottoman symbols.
The protests broadened into an outpouring in the square and throughout the country as security forces cracked down on demonstrators. The images, seen worldwide on social media and TV, sparked criticism around the world as well as in Turkey, a NATO member and a U.S. ally.
The unrest also signaled political danger for Erdogan, a populist and democratically elected politician serving his third term in office.
Erdogan has been criticized -- even by his allies -- for using heavy-handed tactics in his governance and for trying to impose changes without first seeking public input. The park plan represented the final straw for many Turks, who accuse the government of trying to impose its will whenever and wherever it wants.
On Friday, Erdogan met with protesters in Ankara and then said he would suspend plans to build the mall in Istanbul pending a court decision on the protesters' objections to its construction.
If the judicial ruling is not in line with what Gezi protesters want, a popular vote will be held.
Erdogan also agreed to investigate claims of excessive use of force by police during the protests, some of which have turned violent.
Tayfun Kahraman, a city planner speaking on behalf of the Taksim Solidarity protest movement, thanked Erdogan and his ministers for accepting their demands for a meeting.
"We will closely follow his promises and the process. Unfortunately, four people died in the incidents. We still feel the pain of their death."
Despite conciliatory statements from both sides, protesters defied the pleas of their prime minister and remained encamped Saturday in the park where the demonstrations started 19 days ago.