Turkish President Erdogan Says “Coup Is Over“

Turkish President Erdogan Says “Coup Is Over“

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A man lies in defiance in front of a military tank at Istanbul's Ataturk International Airport in the early morning hours of July 16 (local time). (AP=Newsis)
A man lies in defiance in front of a military tank at Istanbul’s Ataturk International Airport in the early morning hours of July 16 (local time). (AP=Newsis)

On the afternoon of July 15 (local time), one day after Turkey’s military attempted a coup in Ankara, the capital of Turkey, and in Istanbul, the largest city of Turkey, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared that the military coup was over and said he had ordered the arrest of the coup plotters.

Around 4 a.m. on July 16, six hours after a Turkish military faction attempted a coup, President Erdogan appeared at Istanbul’s Ataturk International Airport. He said in a live TV speech that the attempted coup was “a rebellion and a treason” and vowed that those responsible for the coup would pay a heavy price for their treason. He reiterated that he and his government had been democratically elected by the people of Turkey. Then he added that the military coup was over and that the government was in control.
President Erdogan said the coup was an illegal action outside of the chain of command, perpetrated by a small faction within the military. He declared that he would not leave Istanbul until the coup was put down and the city in chaos was back to normal.
According to local media, Turkish military forces launched a coup, with armed soldiers and tanks taking to the streets of Ankara and Istanbul, blocked key bridges in Istanbul and fired shots in Ankara. As a result, 42 people, including 17 police officers were killed, with at least 150 injured. Despite all that, citizens came out to the streets and the squares to confront the military, in response to President’s Erdogan’s appeal for support. Bombs were thrown at the lobby of the Parliament building in Ankara, which shattered windows and caused other damage.
Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Simsek told CNN that the military coup failed. However, CNN said that shootings and explosions were still taking place, and took a cautious attitude, saying that it was still unclear whether the army or the elected government was in control.

ceh@newshankuk.com