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Friday, July 15, 2016

Attempted Coup in Turkey, Live Stream and Videos from Ankara

Ankara parliament building ‘bombed from air’ – state agency ==================== Fri Jul 15, 2016 | 10:17 PM EDT Factbox: Coups and plots in Turkey over past 50 years Factbox: Coups and plots in Turkey over past 50...X (Reuters) - Here are some details about the military coups in the last 50 years, which have unseated four elected governments in Turkey: 1960: -- On May 2, an almost bloodless military coup was carried out, led by officers and cadets from the Istanbul and Ankara war colleges. -- The next day, the commander of land forces, General Cemal Gursel, demanded political reforms and resigned when his demands were refused. -- The leaders established a 38-member National Unity Committee with Gursel as chairman. Of 601 people tried, 464 were found guilty. Three former ministers, including Prime Minister Adnan Menderes, were executed and 12 others, including President Celal Bayar, had death sentences commuted to life imprisonment. * 1971 - The "Coup by Memorandum": -- The military delivered a warning to the government to restore order after months of strikes and street fighting between leftists and nationalists. Some months later, Prime Minister Suleyman Demirel stepped down and a coalition of conservative politicians and technocrats set to restore order under the supervision of the military. Martial law was established in several provinces and not completely lifted until September 1973. * 1980: -- On Sept. 12, 1980, the senior command of the army led by General Kenan Evren, carried out a coup. The action followed a resurgence of street fighting between leftists and nationalists. Leading politicians were arrested, and parliament, political parties, and trade unions were dissolved. A five-member National Security Council took control, suspending the constitution and implementing a provisional constitution that gave almost unlimited power to military commanders. ADVERTISEMENT * 1997 - The "Post-Modern Coup": -- On June 18, 1997 Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan, denounced by opponents as a danger to the country's secular order, stepped down under pressure from the military, business, the judiciary and fellow politicians. The generals saw themselves compelled to act to defend the secular state founded by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. * 2007 -- The shadowy Ergenekon group first came to light when a cache of explosives was discovered in a police raid on an Istanbul house. Eventually hundreds of people went on trial for an alleged coup attempt against then-prime minister Tayyip Erdogan, and 275 officers, journalists, lawyers and more were found guilty. The verdicts were all overturned this year after the appeals court ruled a network called Ergenekon was not proven to exist. Erdogan, who became president in 2014, initially supported the prosecution but later blamed police and prosecutors who belong to a religious movement led by Fethullah Gulen, who lives in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania for faking the conspiracy. He denies playing any role. * 2010 -- A newspaper revealed a secularist coup plot, dubbed Sledgehammer, that reportedly dated back to 2003, aimed at fomenting social chaos to topple Erdogan's Islamist-rooted AK Party. In 2012, a court jailed 300 of the 365 defendants. Two years later, almost all of those convicted were freed after the Constitutional Court ruled their rights had been violated. Again, Gulen's followers were blamed for the case, which they deny. (Compiling by Andrew Heavens and Ayla Jean Yackley; Editing by Alison Williams) ================================================ Fri Jul 15, 2016 | 10:17 PM EDT Factbox: Turkey's attempted coup People surround a Turkish army tank in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Tumay Berkin People surround a Turkish army tank in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. Reuters/Tumay Berkin Factbox: Turkey's attempted coup (Reuters) - Below is a timeline of breaking events in Turkey on Friday. All times in GMT, based on the times Reuters reported the events. Reuters does not vouch for events reported by other media. 2352 - Turkish PM says situation under control, blames Gulen movement, declares no-fly zone over Ankara. A U.S.-based organization close to Gulen earlier denied involvement. 2339 - Bomb hits parliament in Ankara, state-run Anadolu Agency says. Reuters witness hears blast in Istanbul. 2320 - Kerry says emphasized "absolute support for Turkey's democratically elected, civilian government and democratic institutions" in phone call with Turkish foreign minister. 2313 - Group close to U.S.-based cleric Gulen says accusations it was involved in coup attempt are "highly irresponsible". Condemns military intervention in Turkish politics, says concerned about safety of citizens. 2305 - President Obama says he and Secretary of State Kerry agree that all parties in Turkey should support elected government. Urges restraint, avoidance of bloodshed - White House statement. 2304 - State-run Anadolu Agency says 17 police killed at Ankara special forces HQ; no independent confirmation 2259 - Turkish fighter jet shoots down military helicopter used by coup-plotters over Ankara, broadcaster NTV says. 2251 - Commander of special forces says a group has engaged in treason, they will not succeed. Says military does not condone coup. 2247 - PM says gangs and illegal formations are behind coup attempt, and calls it a terrorist act. He says government remains in charge. Urges people to take to the streets. 2237 - Commander of Turkey's First Army, part of land forces responsible for Istanbul and other western areas, said those attempting a coup were a small faction and "nothing to worry about". 2226 - Two loud explosions heard in center of Turkish capital 2208 - Tanks surround Turkish parliament building, open fire. Gunfire heard at Istanbul airport. 2203 - Turkish justice minister says members of a movement loyal to U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen in the army are behind the attempted coup. 2151 - A military helicopter opens fire over the Turkish capital Ankara, witnesses report an explosion in the capital. 2135 - Turkish state broadcaster TRT goes off air, but later starts broadcasting from London. 2126 - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan urges people to take to the streets to protest against what he describes as a coup attempt by a minority faction within the military. Speaking to a CNN Turk reporter via a cellphone video link he says it will meet a "necessary response". He says he is returning to the capital Ankara. 2122 - Turkish PM says on Twitter everything will be done to put down coup attempt, even if it means fatalities. Says sieges are under way at some important buildings, without specifying, but urges people to remain calm. 2118 - Presidential source says president and government are still in power. 2105 - Turkish state broadcaster says reading statement on the orders of the military - that new constitution will be prepared, accuses government of eroding democratic and secular rule of law, that the country is being run by a "peace council", that martial law imposed, curfew imposed across the country. 2102 - Head of Istanbul branch of Turkey's ruling AK Party says soldiers enter party building, told to go. 2058 - Soldiers are inside buildings of Turkish state broadcaster TRT in Ankara, TRT correspondent tells Reuters. 2057 - Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other social media restricted in Turkey, say internet monitoring groups. 2049 - Turkish presidential source says statement made on behalf of armed forces was not authorized by military command. 2047 - Turkish chief of military staff among hostages taken at military headquarters in Ankara, says state-run Anadolu agency. 2038 - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan is safe, reports CNN Turk. 2025 - Turkish military says has taken power to protect democratic order. In a statement sent by email and reported on Turkish TV channels, the military says all of Turkey's existing foreign relations will be maintained. 2002 - Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim says attempted coup under way, calls for calm. He says a group within Turkey's military has attempted to overthrow the government and security forces have been called in to "do what is necessary". 1950 - Gunshots are heard in Ankara, military jets and helicopters seen flying overhead. Helicopters seen overhead in Istanbul. 1929 - Istanbul's Bosphorus Bridge and Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge are both closed. Dogan News Agency footage shows cars and buses being diverted. (Compiled by Andrew Heavens; Editing by Alison Williams) ========================================== Published time: 15 Jul, 2016 23:46 Edited time: 16 Jul, 2016 00:08 Get short URL Turkish army tanks drive on a street in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Tumay Berkin Turkish army tanks drive on a street in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Tumay Berkin / Reuters Turkish state-run network Anadolu Agency reported that a bomb hit the Turkish parliament building in the capital of Ankara. FOLLOW LIVE UPDATES According to Anadolu, the bomb has been "thrown" by the coup supporters. An explosion has been confirmed by deputies in the parliament building, Hurriyet Daily News reported. Turkey army says it seizes power; Erdogan says: "We will overcome this" July 16, 2016 A Turkish military stands guard near the Taksim Square in Istanbul View photos A Turkish military stands guard near the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey. REUTERS/Murad Sezer More By Nick Tattersall and Tulay Karadeniz ISTANBUL/ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey's military said on Friday it had seized power but President Tayyip Erdogan vowed that the attempted coup would be put down. If successful, the overthrow of Erdogan, who has ruled Turkey since 2003, would be one of the biggest shifts in the Middle East in years, transforming one of the most important U.S. allies in the region while war rages on its border. "We will overcome this," Erdogan said, speaking on a video call to a mobile phone held up to the camera by an announcer on the Turkish sister station of CNN. He called on his followers to take to the streets to defend his government and said the coup plotters would pay a heavy price. An official said Erdogan was speaking from Marmaris on the Turkish coast where he was on holiday. Erdogan said he would swiftly return to Ankara. Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said the elected government remained in office. However, it appeared that those behind the coup had the upper hand initially. Airports were shut, access to Internet social media sites was cut off, and troops sealed off the two bridges over the Bosphorus in Istanbul, one of which was still lit up red, white and blue in solidarity with victims of the Bastille Day truck attack in France a day earlier. Warplanes and helicopters roared over the capital Ankara. An explosion was heard in Ankara, where a helicopter opened fire. Soldiers took control of TRT state television, which announced a countrywide curfew and martial law. An announcer read a statement on the orders of the military that accused the government of eroding the democratic and secular rule of law. The country would be run by a "peace council" that would ensure the safety of the population, the statement said. TRT later went off the air. The state-run Anadolu news agency said the chief of Turkey's military staff was among people taken "hostage" in the capital Ankara. CNN Turk also reported that hostages were being held at the military headquarters. NOT A TINPOT COUP A senior EU source monitoring the situation said: "It looks like a relatively well orchestrated coup by a significant body of the military, not just a few colonels. They've got control of the airports and are expecting control over the TV station imminently. They control several strategic points in Istanbul. "Given the scale of the operation, it is difficult to imagine they will stop short of prevailing. It's not just a few colonels," the source repeated. One European diplomat was dining with the Turkish ambassador to a European capital when guests were interrupted by the pinging of urgent news on their mobile phones. "This is clearly not some tinpot little coup. The Turkish ambassador was clearly shocked and is taking it very seriously," the diplomat told Reuters as the dinner party broke up. "However it looks in the morning, this will have massive implications for Turkey. This has not come out of nowhere." U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, speaking jointly after talks in Moscow, both said they hoped bloodshed would be avoided. The U.S. State Department said Americans in Turkey should shelter indoors. Other countries issued similar advice. Turkey, a NATO member with the second biggest military in the Western alliance, is one of the most important allies of the United States in the fight against Islamic State, which seized swathes of neighboring Iraq and Syria. Turkey is one of the main backers of opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in that country's civil war, host to 2.7 million Syrian refugees and launchpad last year for the biggest influx of migrants to Europe since World War Two. Celebratory gunfire erupted in Syria's capital Damascus as reports emerged that Erdogan had been toppled, and people took the streets to celebrate there and in the government-held section of the divided city of Aleppo. Turkey has been at war with Kurdish separatists, and has suffered numerous bombing and shooting attacks this year, including an attack two weeks ago by Islamists at Istanbul's main airport that killed more than 40 people. In an earlier statement sent by email and reported on TV channels, the military said it had taken power to protect the democratic order and to maintain human rights. All of Turkey's existing foreign relations would be maintained and the rule of law would remain the priority, it said. After serving as prime minister from 2003, Erdogan was elected president in 2014 with plans to alter the constitution to give the previously ceremonial presidency far greater executive powers. His opponents say his rule has become increasingly authoritarian. His AK Party, with roots in Islamism, has long had a strained relationship with the military and nationalists in a state that was founded on secularist principles after World War One. The military has a history of mounting coups to defend secular principles, but has not seized power directly since 1980. Prime Minister Yildirim said a group within Turkey's military had attempted to overthrow the government and security forces have been called in to "do what is necessary". "Some people illegally undertook an illegal action outside of the chain of command," Yildirim said in comments broadcast by private channel NTV. "The government elected by the people remains in charge. This government will only go when the people say so." (Reporting by Ayla Jean Yackley, Nick Tattersall, David Dolan, Akin Aytekin and Orhan Coskun; Writing by Peter Graff; Editing by Catherine Evans) ##انقلاب_تركيا To clarify, the Turkish army & Kemalists are just as bad as Erdogan (if not worse). This is simply schadenfreude. Turkish military claims it has taken over the country, deposing President Erdogan “in the name of human rights.” Helicopters and military jets were seen flying low above Istanbul and Ankara, and tanks rolling in the streets. Martial law has been declared and a curfew imposed. Erdogan making a statement on facetime right now. pic.twitter.com/F1Nip0C01V ======================== The Latest: Report: Turkey soldiers fire on people on bridge Jul. 15, 2016 6:46 PM EDT 0 11 photos APTOPIX Turkey Military Coup Turkish soldiers secure the area as supporters of Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan protest... Read more ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — The Latest on what appears to be an attempted military coup in Turkey (all times local): 1:40 a.m. Turkish news agency Dogan has reported that soldiers have opened fired on people trying to cross Istanbul's Bosporus bridge in protest of the attempted coup, and some have been wounded. TV footage showed people running for cover as shots rang out. Earlier, a statement attributed to the military said that Turkish armed forces have "fully seized control" of the country. Sponsored Links 19 Giant Dogs That Are Real PressRoomVIP This Is the Worst Game to Get Addicted To Sparta Free Online Game President Recep Tayyip Erdogan then called on citizens to take to the streets in a show of support for the government. ___ 1:35 a.m. Turkey's Istanbul-based first army commander says the soldiers involved in an attempted coup "represent a small group" and "there is no cause for concern," according to the state-run Anadolu Agency. An earlier statement attributed to the military said that Turkish armed forces have "fully seized control" of the country. But First Army Commander Umit Dundar told Anadolu that "we are working to solve the problem here. They represent a small group within the First Army Command. There is no cause for concern. We are taking the necessary precautions with (soldiers) who have not joined them and remain within the military chain of command." President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called on citizens to take to the streets in a show of support for the government. ___ 1:30 a.m. Turkish Interior Minister Efkan Ala says very effective units from the chief of general staff's office, the Turkish armed forces and the police are responding to the attempted coup in the country. Ala says they are responding to "gangs who have taken cover in certain locations." He spoke by telephone to NTV television and also encouraged Turkish citizens to "fearlessly go out and support our security forces." He says: "We think it would be right for them to go out to the airports, to the streets, especially to the main arteries. As long as they do that this gang's attempts... they will be defeated no matter what." He added "this is a gang that considers nothing sacred, not the people or the nation. They're taking certain actions." ___ 1:15 a.m. NATO hasn't responded immediately to a request for comment on how alliance operations or Turkey's status might be affected after the military said it seized control of the country. Independent observers noted that the 1949 treaty that created the U.S. alliance has no mechanism for suspending members, unlike the United Nations, the European Union or the Organization of American States. Nothing in NATO's founding 1949 Washington Treaty says anything about intervening in the internal or political affairs of an alliance member, and Turkey kept its NATO membership following past military coups. The treaty's key clause, Article 5, stipulates that NATO member states agree that "an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all," but that language has taken to apply to an external enemy. ___ 1:10 a.m. Loud explosions have been heard in Turkey's capital Ankara and CNN-Turk reports an explosion occurred at the state-run television building. Turkey's state-run news agency report military helicopters have also attacked the headquarters of TURKSAT satellite station on the outskirts of Ankara and the Ankara Police headquarters. Dozens of tanks were seen moving toward a palace that is now used by the prime minister and deputy prime ministers. A civilian car tried to stop one of the tanks, but it rammed through the vehicle as those in the car escaped. ___ 12:50 a.m. Turkey's president has urged citizens to take to the streets in a show of support for the government after the military said it seized full control of the country. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, speaking to CNN-Turk through FaceTime, called the actions by the military "an attempt at an uprising by a minority within our armed forces." The president's office refused to disclose Erdogan's whereabouts, saying he was at a secure location. Erdogan said "I don't believe this coup attempt will be successful." Erdogan added: "There is absolutely no chain of command here. Right now the chain of command has been put on hold." ___ 12:35 a.m. The White House says President Barack Obama has been briefed on developments in key NATO ally Turkey where the military claims to have seized power in a coup. The National Security Council said Obama had been apprised of Friday "unfolding situation" in Turkey and would continue to get regular updates. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says he hopes for stability and continuity in Turkey following the reports. Kerry, in Moscow for talks with Russian officials on Syria on Friday, told reporters he didn't have details of the situation rapidly unfolding on the ground in Turkey and said it would be "inappropriate" to comment on developments. But, he expressed hope that the key ally and strategically important member of the coalition fighting the Islamic State would remain at peace. ___ 12:25 a.m. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and other Russian officials have called on their countrymen in Turkey to stay indoors amid uncertainty about whether a military coup is taking place. Lavrov made the statement early Saturday at a news conference with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. However, Lavrov, who had been in lengthy talks with Kerry, said he had little information about what was taking place in Turkey. Russia's tourism authority issued a similar warning. Turkey had long been a popular vacation destination for Russians, but the numbers dropped sharply last year when Russia banned package tours to Turkey amid tensions over Turkey shooting down a Russian warplane and it was unclear how many Russians currently are in the country. ___ 12:20 a.m. A Turkish military statement read on state TRT television says the military has seized power, citing rising autocratic rule and increased terrorism. But CNN-Turk has quoted Defense Minister Fikri Isik as describing it as a "pirate statement." Earlier, another statement published by the private Dogan news agency says that the military has "fully seized control" of the country. ___ 11:45 p.m. A Turkish news agency has published a statement from the military saying the armed forces have "fully seized control" of the country. The Dogan agency reported that the statement said that the military did this "to reinstall the constitutional order, democracy, human rights and freedoms, to ensure that the rule of law once again reigns in the country, for the law and order to be reinstated." The military statement went on to say that "all international agreements and commitments will remain. We pledge that good relations with all world countries will continue." ___ 11:10 p.m. Turkey's prime minister says a group within Turkey's military has engaged in what appeared to be an attempted coup. Binali Yildirim told NTV television: "it is correct that there was an attempt." Yildirim didn't provide details, but said Turkey would never allow any "initiative that would interrupt democracy." Earlier, military jets were heard flying over the capital, Ankara. Media reports said ambulances were seen in front of the Turkey's military headquarters. =============== Twitter | Search Home Connect Trends Me M2_tab_indicator Tweet Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 2h BREAKING: Israeli Foreign Ministry advises all Israeli nationals in Turkey to stay indoors, and advises against travel to Turkey. View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 2h RIGHT NOW: Military helicopter is shooting at the Turkish State TV HQ. Loud explosions heard in Ankara. View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 2h BREAKING FOOTAGE: Tank attempts to head towards Prime Minister's Palace, tank is blocked by Erdogan supporters. pic.twitter.com/y7IXjmmWMk View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 2h BREAKING FOOTAGE: Military helicopter in Ankara shoots at Turkish State TV HQ. pic.twitter.com/LrhyQpLlli View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 2h RIGHT NOW: Erdogan supporters fill square in Ankara, defying curfew enforced by military. pic.twitter.com/ST2gZk5pk4 View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 2h BREAKING PHOTO: Huge explosion in Ankara as smoke rises over the Turkish capital. pic.twitter.com/vsg8Rdz4I6 View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 2h RIGHT NOW: Huge demonstration in Ankara by Erdogan supporters against the military coup. Some blocking tanks. pic.twitter.com/3GXcrsVCUV View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 1h BREAKING FOOTAGE: Military jet flying at incredibly low altitude over protests against the coup in Ankara. pic.twitter.com/TpwvRDiTej View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 1h BREAKING VIDEO: Police in Istanbul have arrested soldiers taking part in coup. Police mainly remain loyal to Erdogan pic.twitter.com/2YSFvBEzKH View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 1h BREAKING FOOTAGE: Military helicopter is firing at targets on the ground in Ankara. pic.twitter.com/lAmrZlNN74 View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 1h BREAKING: 17 Turkish officers have been killed in a helicopter attack on police special forces headquarters in Ankara. View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 56m BREAKING FOOTAGE: Pro-Erdogan protesters disarm coup-backing military soldiers in Ankara. pic.twitter.com/6ZNLSfMo2x View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst BREAKING FOOTAGE: Military tank hijacked by pro-Erdogan supporters in Ankara. pic.twitter.com/ielaXuhNS1 4:37 PM - 15 Jul 2016 Twitter by: Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 21 Retweets 7 Likes Reply Retweet Like More Ezio Auditore Ezio Auditore @Malkovitze 34m @IsraelNewsFirst twitter.com/agirecudi/stat… View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 32m BREAKING FOOTAGE: Building in Ankara attacked by military aircraft. pic.twitter.com/gEvBopD5F7 View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 28m BREAKING: Loud explosion heard in Istanbul. Details to follow. View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 23m BREAKING: Turkish Parliament in Ankara has reportedly been bombed from the air. View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 10m BREAKING: Turkish government declares a no-fly zone over Ankara. They say any jet or helicopter over Ankara will be shot down. View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 4m BREAKING FOOTAGE: Military fighter jets conducting airstrikes in Ankara. pic.twitter.com/zgxcWSyKYa View conversation · Reply Retweet Like Israel News First Israel News First @IsraelNewsFirst 14s BREAKING: Damage caused to the Turkish Parliament in Ankara after it was bombed. pic.twitter.com/FNdBhMM5W1 ============================================================== Sat Jul 16, 2016 | 12:42 AM EDT Turkish coup bid crumbles as crowds answer call to streets, Erdogan returns 5h ago | 01:22 Turkey's president urges people to head to streets to protest coup Turkish coup bid crumbles as crowds answer call to...X By Nick Tattersall and Ece Toksabay | ISTANBUL/ANKARA (Reuters) - An attempted Turkish military coup appeared to crumble in the early hours of Saturday after crowds answered President Tayyip Erdogan's call to take to the streets to support him. Erdogan, who had been holidaying on the southwest coast when the coup was launched by a faction in the armed forces, flew into Istanbul before dawn on Saturday and was shown on TV appearing among a crowd of supporters outside Ataturk Airport. The uprising was an "act of treason", and those responsible would pay a heavy price, he later told reporters at a hastily arranged news conference. Arrests of officers were under way, and it would go higher up the ranks, culminating in the cleansing of the military, he said. Soldiers took control of the airport soon after Erdogan had landed, Reuters witnesses said. A senior official later said the soldiers were loyal to the government. Rebel soldiers who had taken control of military aircraft were still firing from the air early on Saturday and fighter jets had been scrambled to intercept them, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said, underscoring the chaotic situation. Gunfire and explosions rocked both the main city Istanbul and capital Ankara in a chaotic night after soldiers took up positions in both cities and ordered state television to read out a statement declaring they had taken power. A senior official said 42 people had been killed in the violence in Ankara alone, most of them civilians. More deaths were also reported in Istanbul. Early on Saturday, Reuters journalists saw around 30 pro-coup soldiers surrender their weapons after being surrounded by armed police in Istanbul's central Taksim square. They were taken away in police vans as a fighter jet repeatedly screeched overhead at low altitude, causing a boom that shook surrounding buildings and shattered windows. A successful overthrow of Erdogan, who has ruled Turkey since 2003, would have marked one of the biggest shifts in the Middle East in years, transforming one of the most important U.S. allies while war rages on its border. A failed coup attempt could still destabilise a pivotal country. Before returning to Istanbul, Erdogan appeared in a video call to the studio of the Turkish sister channel of CNN, where an announcer held up a mobile phone to the camera to show him. He called on Turks to take to the streets to defend his government and said the coup plotters would pay a heavy price. LAWMAKERS IN HIDING By the early hours of Saturday, lawmakers were still hiding in shelters inside the parliament building in Ankara, which was being fired on by tanks. Smoke rose up from nearby, Reuters witnesses said. An opposition MP told Reuters parliament was hit three times and that people had been wounded. A Turkish military commander said fighter jets had shot down a helicopter used by the coup plotters over Ankara. State-run Anadolu news agency said 17 police were killed at special forces headquarters there. Momentum turned against the coup plotters as the night wore on. Crowds defied orders to stay indoors, gathering at major squares in Istanbul and Ankara, waving flags and chanting. ADVERTISEMENT "We have a prime minister, we have a chief of command, we're not going to leave this country to degenerates," shouted one man, as groups of government supporters climbed onto a tank near Ataturk airport. Erdogan and other officials blamed the attempted coup on followers of Fethullah Gulen, an influential cleric in self-imposed exile in the United States who once supported Erdogan but became a nemesis. The pro-Gulen Alliance for Shared Values said it condemned any military intervention in domestic politics. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said he phoned the Turkish foreign minister and emphasised "absolute support for Turkey's democratically elected, civilian government and democratic institutions". The coup began with warplanes and helicopters roaring over Ankara and troops moving in to seal off the bridges over the Bosphorus Strait that links Europe and Asia in Istanbul. Authorities had shut the strait to tanker traffic, shipping agent GAC said. Reuters reporters saw a helicopter open fire in Ankara. Anadolu said military helicopters had fired on the headquarters of the intelligence agency. ‹ Turkish military stand guard in the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer Turkish military stand guard in the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. Reuters/Murad Sezer Turkish military stand guard near the the Taksim Square as people wave with Turkish flags in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer Turkish military stand guard near the the Taksim Square as people wave with Turkish flags in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. Reuters/Murad Sezer Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan is seen amid his supporters at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Huseyin Aldemir Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan is seen amid his supporters at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. Reuters/Huseyin Aldemir A tank is seen in front of the gate of the General Staff headquarters during an attempted coup in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer A tank is seen in front of the gate of the General Staff headquarters during an attempted coup in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. Reuters/Stringer Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addresses during an attempted coup in Istanbul, Turkey July16, 2016. REUTERS/Huseyin Aldemir Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addresses during an attempted coup in Istanbul, Turkey July16, 2016. Reuters/Huseyin Aldemir Turkish soldiers surrender their weapons to policemen during an attempted coup in Istanbul's Taksim Square, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer Turkish soldiers surrender their weapons to policemen during an attempted coup in Istanbul's Taksim Square, Turkey, July 16, 2016. Reuters/Murad Sezer Turkish soldiers surrender to policemen during an attempted coup in Istanbul's Taksim Square, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer Turkish soldiers surrender to policemen during an attempted coup in Istanbul's Taksim Square, Turkey, July 16, 2016. Reuters/Murad Sezer People react near a military vehicle during an attempted coup in Ankara, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Tumay Berkin People react near a military vehicle during an attempted coup in Ankara, Turkey, July 16, 2016. Reuters/Tumay Berkin REFILE - CORRECTING HEADLINE - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan speaks to media in the resort town of Marmaris, Turkey, July 15, 2016. REUTERS/Kenan Gurbuz REFILE - CORRECTING HEADLINE - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan speaks to media in the resort town of Marmaris, Turkey, July 15, 2016. Reuters/Kenan Gurbuz A Turkish army tank drives on a street in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer A Turkish army tank drives on a street in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. Reuters/Stringer People stand on a Turkish army tank at Ataturk airport in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/ALDEMIR People stand on a Turkish army tank at Ataturk airport in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. Reuters/ALDEMIR Still frame taken from amateur video obtained by Reuters on July 16, 2016 shows a tank driving past people, in Ankara, Turkey. Amateur Video/ via REUTERS TV Still frame taken from amateur video obtained by Reuters on July 16, 2016 shows a tank driving past people, in Ankara, Turkey. Amateur Video/ via Reuters TV People take cover near a bridge during an attempted coup in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Yagiz Karahan People take cover near a bridge during an attempted coup in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. Reuters/Yagiz Karahan A policeman aims his weapon in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Kemal Aslan A policeman aims his weapon in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. Reuters/Kemal Aslan A crowd gathers near a wrecked police vehicle at military headquarters in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer A crowd gathers near a wrecked police vehicle at military headquarters in Ankara, Turkey July 16, 2016. Reuters/Stringer Supporters of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan are dispersed with shots in the air by the military at the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer Supporters of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan are dispersed with shots in the air by the military at the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. Reuters/Murad Sezer A Turkish military stands guard in the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer A Turkish military stands guard in the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. Reuters/Murad Sezer Turkish military block access to the Bosphorus bridge, which links the city's European and Asian sides, in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer Turkish military block access to the Bosphorus bridge, which links the city's European and Asian sides, in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. Reuters/Stringer Turkish military block access to the Bosphorus bridge, which links the city's European and Asian sides, in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer Turkish military block access to the Bosphorus bridge, which links the city's European and Asian sides, in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. Reuters/Stringer Turkish military discuss with people at the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer Turkish military discuss with people at the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. Reuters/Murad Sezer Turkish military stand guard near the the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey. REUTERS/Murad Sezer Turkish military stand guard near the the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey. Reuters/Murad Sezer Turkish military stand guard in the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer Turkish military stand guard in the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. Reuters/Murad Sezer Turkish military stand guard near the the Taksim Square as people wave with Turkish flags in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer Turkish military stand guard near the the Taksim Square as people wave with Turkish flags in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. Reuters/Murad Sezer › SOCIAL MEDIA CUT OFF Airports were shut and access to internet social media sites was cut off in the first hours of the coup attempt. Soldiers took control of TRT state television, which announced a countrywide curfew and martial law. An announcer read a statement on the orders of the military that accused the government of eroding the democratic and secular rule of law. Turkey would be run by a "peace council" that would ensure the safety of the population, the statement said. TRT went off the air shortly afterwards. It resumed broadcasting in the early hours of Saturday. Anadolu said the chief of Turkey's military staff was among people taken "hostage" in the capital Ankara but Prime Minister Yildirim later said he was back in control. The coup had appeared strong early on Friday evening. A senior EU source monitoring the situation said: "It looks like a relatively well-orchestrated coup by a significant body of the military, not just a few colonels ... They control several strategic points in Istanbul." One European diplomat was dining with the Turkish ambassador to a European capital when guests were interrupted by the pinging of urgent news on their mobile phones. Related Coverage At least 60 killed in attempted military coup in Turkey: senior official Erdogan supporters attack surrendering Turkish pro-coup soldiers: witness Pro-coup faction of Turkish military says still fighting: statement Turkey appoints acting military chief, whereabouts of predecessor unknown -official Turkey detains 336 people nationwide in connection with coup attempt - minister U.S. urges support of Turkey government as world watches coup Group close to Gulen denies involvement in Turkey coup bid Coup bid in Turkey carried live on social media despite blockages Fact BoxTurkey's attempted coup Fact BoxCoups and plots in Turkey over past 50 years SlideshowTurkish military stand guard near the the Taksim Square in Istanbul VideoAK Party supporters protest against Turkish soldiers in Istanbul VideoTurkish soldiers detained by police in Ankara VideoPeople take cover in Istanbul as gunshots are fired amid attempted coup in Turkey "This is clearly not some tinpot little coup. The Turkish ambassador was clearly shocked and is taking it very seriously," the diplomat told Reuters as the dinner party broke up. "However it looks in the morning, this will have massive implications for Turkey. This has not come out of nowhere." Turkey, a NATO member with the second biggest military in the Western alliance, is one of the most important allies of the United States in the fight against the Islamic State militant group, which seized swaths of neighbouring Iraq and Syria. The Pentagon said there was no impact on operations against Islamic State from the U.S. air base at Incirlik in Turkey. Turkey is also one of the main backers of opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in that country's civil war, host to 2.7 million Syrian refugees and launchpad last year for the biggest influx of migrants to Europe since World War Two. Celebratory gunfire erupted in Syria's capital Damascus after the army claimed to have toppled Erdogan. People took to the streets to celebrate there and in other government-held cities. Turkey has been at war with Kurdish separatists and has suffered numerous bombing and shooting attacks this year, including an attack two weeks ago by Islamists at Ataturk airport that killed more than 40 people. After serving as prime minister from 2003, Erdogan was elected president in 2014 with plans to alter the constitution to give the previously ceremonial presidency far greater executive powers. Turkey has enjoyed an economic boom during his time in office and has dramatically expanded its influence across the region. However, opponents say his rule has become increasingly authoritarian. His AK Party, with roots in Islamism, has long had a strained relationship with the military and nationalists in a state that was founded on secularist principles after World War One. The military has a history of mounting coups to defend secularism, but has not seized power directly since 1980. (Reporting by Humeyra Pamuk, Ayla Jean Yackley, Nick Tattersall, David Dolan, Akin Aytekin, Tulay Karadeniz, Can Sezer, Gulsen Solaker, Ece Toksabay, Murad Sezer, Ercan Gurses, Nevzat Devranoglu, Dasha Afanasieva, Birsen Altayli and Orhan Coskun; Writing by Peter Graff and Lincoln Feast; Editing by Catherine Evans, Mary Milliken and Paul Tait) =========================================================== Home/News/ Military coup in Turkey Live updates Published time: 15 Jul, 2016 20:33 Edited time: 16 Jul, 2016 03:44 Get short URL People stand on a Turkish army tank at Ataturk airport in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. © Reuters People stand on a Turkish army tank at Ataturk airport in Istanbul, Turkey July 16, 2016. © Reuters Dozens of people have been killed in an attempted military coup in Turkey. Anti-Erdogan military seized government buildings, bombed the Parliament and took over media bureaus. However, thousands of people flooded onto the streets across Turkey as Erdogan vowed to respond. Trends Military coup in Turkey READ MORE: At least 60 dead in attempted Turkish coup as shootouts continue in Ankara & Istanbul 16 July 2016 06:05 GMT Iran has suspended all the flights to Turkey, the deputy director of Tehran’s Imam Khomeini International Airport was quoted as saying by Iranian state media. “We will revise the situation to resume the flights when we have the latest information,” Koroush Fattahi said. 05:59 GMT 05:53 GMT 05:50 GMT 05:49 GMT South Korea’s Foreign Ministry advised its citizens to cancel planned trips to Turkey in the wake of the attempted coup. “The government expresses grave concern about the situation arising from actions by a part of Turkish military and hopes the situation is swiftly brought under control through enforcement of democratic and constitutional order and stability is restored,” it said. 05:48 GMT 05:44 GMT At least 16 coup plotters have been killed in clashes at Turkey’s military police command in Ankara, Turkey’s Police Chief, Celalettin Lekesiz, told AP, adding that some 250 people had been detained. Clashes at the command are continuing, but “are about to come to an end,” he added. 05:36 GMT 05:35 GMT Turkish military chief of staff who was reportedly taken hostage during coup attempt has been rescued, a senior official told Reuters. 05:30 GMT At least 754 members of the armed forces have been detained over the coup attempt, Reuters reported, citing a Turkish official. 05:30 GMT At least 754 members of the armed forces have been detained over the coup attempt, Reuters reported, citing a Turkish official. 05:28 GMT 05:26 GMT Another official stated that 29 colonels and five generals were removed from their posts following the coup attempt. 05:26 GMT Pro-government forces currently control Turkey’s military headquarters, a senior Turkish official told Reuters, adding that small groups of soldiers backing the coup attempt are still resisting and control several military helicopters. 05:25 GMT Turkey’s coup attempt has exposed a deep division between the people and the nation’s army, Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said, while calling for constitutional order to be restored. “What happened in Turkey still needs to be analyzed as the situation continues to unfold… It is essential to restore constitutional order on Turkish territory, so that all the rights and freedoms guaranteed by their legislation are complied with.” 05:25 GMT 05:22 GMT 05:21 GMT A total of about 800 people are in hospitals, including some 200 in Ankara, President of Red Crescent Turkey Dr Kerem Kinik said. 05:15 GMT 05:09 GMT EU hopes to keep Ankara as a “key partner” following a coup attempt in Turkey, said European Council President Donald Tusk, adding that these events will have a significant impact on the region. “A military coup has no place in Turkey. Disputes cannot be solved with guns. Events continue to unfold, and the situation is still far from stabilization,” Tusk said. “The key question is what Turkey will come out of this crisis. Consequences will be crucial for the region and for the relations with the EU. Our hope is to keep Turkey as a key partner in all dimensions.” ========================================================================= Breakingviews on Twitter breakingviews.com breakingviews.com Search the Archive Sunday, 17 July 2016 Sign In Request Trial Home Columns Features Videos Books Calculators About Us ▶Home ▶Considered View ▶Turkey’s failed coup leaves no victors Crackdown 16 July 2016 By Andy Critchlow People wave Turkish flags as they celebrate in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis President Tayyip Erdogan’s government has few reasons for triumphalism after surviving an attempted military coup. Political uncertainty and economic damage now awaits a strategically important U.S. and European Union ally that is the gateway to the Middle East. Erdogan will no doubt swiftly try to restore confidence in his government, though remnants of the uprising by a faction of the military were still being suppressed on July 16. But foreign capital is set to flee, and all the more quickly if he resorts to harsh reprisals. The Turkish lira fell 5 percent to a three-week low in late U.S. trading on July 15 and further declines are likely. This will be a worry for a country whose gross external debt rose to 56 percent of GDP last year, with a third of the stock of such debt maturing in 12 months or sooner, according to the International Monetary Fund. Companies and banks may find it hard to roll over external debt. Any credit crunch would exacerbate the economic damage that the failed coup is already bound to inflict. About 500,000 people are employed in tourism, which accounts for roughly 5 percent of GDP. The failed coup and its aftermath will harm an industry already blighted by the country’s tensions with Russia and a series of bomb attacks. The economy has so far been resilient despite these problems and its exposure to the nearby conflict in Syria, which include absorbing more than a couple of million refugees. The latest shock will, however, be harder to resist. An economic downturn and the risk of a political crackdown could make Erdogan a less reliable ally for the United States and the European Union. For example, the former uses the Incirlik air base in Turkey to launch strikes against Islamic State, which holds territory in Syria and Iraq. Meanwhile, the latter relies on Turkey to reduce the number of Syrian migrants that enter its borders. The international political and market ramifications of the failed coup will persist for far longer than the uprising itself. People wave Turkish flags as they celebrate in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis People wave Turkish flags as they celebrate in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis Related Links Breakingviews is not responsible for the content of external internet sites. ▶ Reuters: Turkish forces try to crush last remnants of coup after Erdogan returns ▶ Timeline: Turkey’s attempted coup ▶ Oil prices rally in late trading after Turkish military takes over Related Articles ▶ Turkey aligns power with prosperity Context News Forces loyal to Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan were fighting on July 16 to suppress the remnants of a military coup that had threatened to overthrow the government. After a night of violence, Reuters reported that 90 people were killed, including many civilians, after a faction of the armed forces tried to seize power with the use of tanks and attack helicopters. Erdogan said perpetrators of the attempted coup would “pay a heavy price”. The value of the Turkish lira fell in late U.S. trading on July 15 after Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said a group within the military had attempted to overthrow the government. There was also a spike in oil prices. Most Popular ▶ Samsung charges up electric car dream with BYD ▶ Post-Brexit upheaval complicates Irish tax rethink ▶ Turkey’s failed coup leaves no victors ▶ Attack in Nice keeps border issue front and centre ▶ Deutsche Bank a decent flutter for Qatari royals Breakingviews on Twitter Privacy Policy Terms and Conditions © Thomson Reuters 2016. All rights reserved. ======================================================== Turkey detains coup plotters at base used by US: Media Sun Jul 17, 2016 7:9AM Home / Middle East / Turkey US Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II fighter jets (foreground) are pictured at Incirlik airbase in the southern city of Adana, Turkey. (Photo by Reuters) US Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II fighter jets (foreground) are pictured at Incirlik airbase in the southern city of Adana, Turkey. (Photo by Reuters) Turkey has detained a senior air force general and other officers accused of involvement in a failed military coup at a key air base used by US forces for raids in Syria, Turkish media reports say. Local news papers, including Hurriyet Daily, said brigadier air force general Bekir Ercan Van was taken into custody Saturday along with over a dozen lower ranking at Incirlik Air Base in the southern province of Adana. AFP quoted an unnamed Turkish official as saying that Ankara suspected Incirlik was used to refuel military aircraft hijacked by the putschists overnight Friday. Last year, Turkey agreed to allow the United States to use Incirlik to carry out raids against purported Daesh targets in neighboring Iraq and Syria. Incirlik is of strategic importance to Washington’s aerial military operations as it is home to A-10s, the most reliable manned aircraft the US uses in its military campaign in the two Arab states. It is also one of six NATO sites in the region, which house tactical nuclear weapons. On Saturday, Turkey said it managed to largely crush an attempted military coup launched by an army faction after a night of explosions, gunfire and tanks rolling along the streets of the capital, Ankara, and the main city of Istanbul. Fierce clashes erupted between army forces and the soldiers involved in the foiled coup. A Turkish army armed vehicle drives in Istanbul on July 16, 2016. ©AFP In the wake of the botched coup, Ankara has launched an intensive crackdown against the judiciary and the military, arresting about 3,000 soldiers, including officers, and dismissing almost a similar number of judges and prosecutors. A total of 265 people were killed in the attempted coup d’état in Turkey. According to the US consulate in Adana, Turkish officials had imposed a security lockdown on the air base in the wake of the coup, preventing all movements in or out of the site. The airspace around Incirlik airbase remained closed for a few hours. The report on arrests inside Incirlik come as a number of Turkish state officials, including Labor and Social Security Minister Suleyman Soylu, have suggested that the US had played a part in the failed coup. The accusations prompted US Secretary of State John Kerry to call Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and reject the claims as “utterly false and harmful to our bilateral relations.” ============================= Turkey turmoil: Foreign plot or staged coup Sun Jul 17, 2016 6:34AM Home / Middle East / Turkey In this photo, Turkish Air Force General Akin Ozturk is seen on the far right. In this photo, Turkish Air Force General Akin Ozturk is seen on the far right. Some of the soldiers detained in Turkey have reportedly told interrogators they were not aware they were part of a coup attempt. They had been told by commanders they were taking part in military maneuvers, the Turkish Hurriyet newspaper has reported. Some soldiers said they understood they were part of a coup when they saw civilians climb on tanks. Turkish televisions have shown footage of soldiers surrendering to people and special forces police without resistance, their hands behind their heads. According to Turkey's state-run Anadolu Agency, all soldiers involved in the attempted coup have been taken into custody. A Turkish official told reporters that six senior army commanders were arrested in connection with the failed coup, including General Akin Öztürk, who in the 1990s was the Turkish military attaché to Israel. The 64-year-old Öztürk, who later served as the commander of Turkey's air force, served in his country's Tel Aviv embassy from 1998 to 2000. He stepped down as air force commander last year, but continued to serve on Turkey's Supreme Military Council. Prior to Friday's coup attempt he was a celebrated military leader, boasting medals from his own air force as well as from NATO. According to a Turkish official, those behind the attempted coup had been preparing for some time to overthrow the Turkish government. Accusations of US role The most dramatic fallout from the event, however, was suggestions by Turkish state officials that the US was involved in the failed coup. The accusations by Labor and Social Security Minister Suleyman Soylu, in an interview on Turkish TV, forced US Secretary of State John Kerry Turkish to call Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and warn that those claims could harm ties. Kerry “made clear that … public insinuations or claims about any role by the United States in the failed coup attempt are utterly false and harmful to our bilateral relations,” State Department spokesman John Kirby said in a statement. The first aftershock came as the Incirlik airbase used by the United States forces lost its electric power and local military authorities closed movement in and out of it. Ankara and Washington have already clashed over US support for Kurdish militants in Syria, which Turkey regards as terrorists trying to carve out an independent state in the region. Staged coup for crackdown? Ankara is also angry with Washington for giving refuge to Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, whose followers Turkey blames for the failed coup. On Saturday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on the US to extradite Gulen but Kerry suggested that his country would do so if Turkish leaders “present us with any legitimate evidence that withstands scrutiny.” Gulen said the attempted overthrow may have been staged. “There is a slight chance, there is a possibility that it could be a staged coup," Gulen told reporters in Pennsylvania. "It could be meant for court accusations and associations." Turkish authorities rounded up nearly 3,000 suspected military plotters on Saturday and ordered thousands of judges detained. Erodogan said that the coup leaders would “pay a heavy price” as his ally and deputy prime minister Mehmet Müezzinoğlu announced that the government is considering bringing back the death penalty for the plotters. “This uprising is a gift from God to us because this will be a reason to cleanse our army,” he said in Istanbul. French President Francois Hollande said he expected there would be a period of repression in Turkey in the aftermath of the failed coup. A successful overthrow of Erdogan would have marked another seismic shift in the Middle East, which is grappling with a Takfiri menace and foreign-backed militants fighting to topple Iraqi and Syrian governments. There are already suspicions that the US and its allies are creating "managed chaos" in the Middle East with the aim of weakening regional countries and propping up Israel. Warning of further instability Russia's Foreign Ministry warned that the coup attempt in Turkey increases the threat to stability in the region. "Moscow is most concerned at the latest events in Turkey," the ministry said in a statement. "The flare-up of the domestic political situation against the backdrop of the existing terrorist threats in this country and the armed conflict in the region brings a heightened risk to international and regional stability." Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov urged Turkey to avoid "bloodshed," saying its problems needed to be resolved "in accordance with the constitution." In Iran, Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani hailed “the victory of democracy and national will over a desperate bid" to topple the government. =================================== Sun Jul 17, 2016 7:03pm EDT Related: World, Aerospace & Defense At height of Turkish coup bid, rebel jets had Erdogan's plane in their sights ANKARA/ISTANBUL | By Humeyra Pamuk and Orhan Coskun Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan waves to the crowd following a funeral service for a victim of the thwarted coup in Istanbul, Turkey, July 17, 2016. Reuters/Alkis Konstantinidis At the height of the attempt to overthrow Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, the rebel pilots of two F-16 fighter jets had Erdogan's plane in their sights. And yet he was able to fly on. The Turkish leader was returning to Istanbul from a holiday near the coastal resort of Marmaris after a faction in the military launched the coup attempt on Friday night, sealing off a bridge across the Bosphorus, trying to capture Istanbul's main airport and sending tanks to parliament in Ankara. "At least two F-16s harassed Erdogan's plane while it was in the air and en route to Istanbul. They locked their radars on his plane and on two other F-16s protecting him," a former military officer with knowledge of the events told Reuters. "Why they didn't fire is a mystery," he said. A successful overthrow of Erdogan, who has ruled the country of about 80 million people since 2003, could have sent Turkey spiraling into conflict and marked another seismic shift in the Middle East, five years after the Arab uprisings erupted and plunged its southern neighbor Syria into civil war. A senior Turkish official confirmed to Reuters that Erdogan's business jet had been harassed while flying from the airport that serves Marmaris by two F-16s commandeered by the coup plotters but that he had managed to reach Istanbul safely. A second senior official also said the presidential jet had been "in trouble in the air" but gave no details. Erdogan said as the coup unfolded that the plotters had tried to attack him in the resort town of Marmaris and had bombed places he had been at shortly after he left. He "evaded death by minutes", the second official said. Around 25 soldiers in helicopters descended on a hotel in Marmaris on ropes, shooting, just after Erdogan had left in an apparent attempt to seize him, broadcaster CNN Turk said. Prime Minister Binali Yildirim had also been directly targeted in Istanbul during the coup bid and had narrowly escaped, the official said, without giving details. Flight tracker websites showed a Gulfstream IV aircraft, a type of business jet owned by the Turkish government, take off from Dalaman airport, which is about an hour and a quarter's drive from Marmaris, at about 2240 GMT on Friday. It later circled in what appeared to be a holding pattern just south of Istanbul, around the time when a Reuters witness in the airport was still hearing bursts of gunfire, before finally coming in to land. Gunfire and explosions rocked both Istanbul and Ankara through Friday night, as the armed faction which tried to seize power strafed the headquarters of Turkish intelligence and parliament in the capital. At one point it ordered state television to read out a statement declaring a nationwide curfew. But the attempt crumbled as forces loyal to Erdogan pushed the rebels back and as the Turkish leader, at one point appearing on broadcaster CNN Turk in a video call from a mobile phone, urged people to take to the streets to support him. More than 290 people were killed in the violence, 104 of them coup supporters, the rest largely civilians and police officers. Related Coverage › Turkish cleric Gulen says Erdogan behind coup, willing to be extradited › EU ministers meet on Turkey, facing perfect storm The aerial aspect of the plot appears to have centered on the Akinci air base around 50 km (30 miles) northwest of Ankara, with at least 15 pilots involved under the orders of a rebel commander, according to the former military officer. The head of the armed forces, Hulusi Akar, was held hostage at the base during the coup attempt but was eventually rescued. Jets from Akinci piloted by the rebels roared low over Istanbul and Ankara repeatedly during the chaos of Friday night, shattering windows and terrifying civilians with sonic booms. Fighter jets taking off from another air base at Eskisehir, west of Ankara, were scrambled to bomb Akinci and try to stop the rebels. However, the rogue aircraft were able to keep flying through the night by refueling mid-air after a tanker plane was commandeered, the first senior official said. The tanker aircraft was taken from the Incirlik air base in southern Turkey, which is used by the U.S.-led coalition to bomb Islamic State in Syria and Iraq. The commander of Incirlik was detained on Sunday for complicity, the official said. MASTERMINDS Three senior officials in Ankara said Akin Ozturk, head of the air force until 2015 and a member of High Military Council (YAS), the top body overseeing the armed forces, was one of the masterminds of the plot. He was among thousands of soldiers detained, pictured on Sunday in handcuffs wearing a striped polo shirt at Ankara police headquarters. Ozturk was due to be retired this August at a meeting of the YAS, which convenes twice a year. According to his biography, still on the military's website, he was born in 1952. The second mastermind was thought to be Muharrem Kose, a former legal adviser to the chief of military staff, the same three Ankara officials said. They described Kose as a follower of Fethullah Gulen, a U.S.-based cleric whose network Erdogan has blamed for carrying out the coup attempt. Kose was removed from his post in March for misconduct but had not been discharged from the armed forces, one of the officials said. His whereabouts are currently unknown. "There were serious preparations ongoing for a very long time. The two people in question seem to have been the brains behind the coup attempt," the official said, declining to be identified because the investigation is still continuing. Erdogan and the government have long accused Gulen's followers of trying to create a "parallel structure" within the courts, police, armed forces and media with the aim of seizing power, a charge the cleric has repeatedly denied. "NOT FULLY PREPARED" Erdogan, his roots in Islamist politics, has always had a difficult relationship with the military, which long saw itself as the guardian of secularism in Turkey, carrying out three coups and forcing a fourth, Islamist-led government from power in the second half of the 20th century. Related Coverage › Turkey reopens air base for U.S fight against Islamic State: Pentagon › Turkish security, coup plotters clash at Istanbul's second airport: official Coup plot trials saw hundreds of officers jailed while Erdogan was prime minister, as the government used the courts to clip the wings of the armed forces. The allegations were later discredited and convictions overturned, but the actions damaged morale and fueled resentment. Yet the coup plotters appear to have overestimated the support they would find within the military ranks. "It was outside the chain of command which was the biggest handicap for the coup plotters," said Sinan Ulgen, a visiting scholar at Carnegie Europe and a former Turkish diplomat. "They had an insufficient portfolio of resources. They were grossly under-equipped to achieve their strategic objectives ... There was definitely quite a degree of incompetence compared to how coups were done here in the past." At one point they tried to silence CNN Turk, forcing the evacuation of the studio. When it came back on air, anchorwoman Nevsin Mengu described the soldiers as young and with "only fear in their eyes and no sign of devotion or determination". The former military officer said the coup plotters appeared to have launched their attempt prematurely because they realized they were under surveillance, something corroborated by other officials in Ankara. "They weren't fully prepared. The plans were leaked, they found out they were being monitored and it all apparently forced them to move faster than planned," the ex-officer said. They also underestimated Erdogan's ability to rally the crowds, his appeal for supporters to take to the streets bringing people out in Istanbul, Ankara and elsewhere even as tanks took to the streets and jets screamed overhead. Sertac Koc, press adviser to the mayor of Kazan district where the Akinci base is located, said local residents started noticing the high number of jets taking off as events unfolded. "When they saw jets hitting parliament in Ankara and people in Istanbul, they got organized among themselves and marched to the base to try and stop them," he told Reuters by phone. "They tried to block traffic to the base by parking their vehicles, burning hay to block the jets' vision, and in the end they attempted to cut the power to the base," he said. Seven people were killed when the rebel soldiers opened fire, Koc said, among the dozens of civilians killed across the country in one of Turkey's worst nights of bloodshed. (Additional reporting by Tom Miles in Geneva, Paul Taylor in Brussels; Writing by Nick Tattersall; editing by David Stamp) =============================================================== World | Thu Jul 21, 2016 4:34pm EDT Related: World Turkey's Erdogan says military to be restructured after abortive coup ANKARA | By Samia Nakhoul, Nick Tattersall and Orhan Coskun Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan attends an interview with Reuters at the Presidential Palace in Ankara, Turkey, July 21, 2016. Reuters/Umit Bektas Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan told Reuters on Thursday that there were significant failures in intelligence ahead of last Friday's attempted military coup and that the armed forces would quickly be restructured. In his first interview since declaring a state of emergency following the abortive coup, Erdogan said a new coup attempt was possible but would not be easy, saying "we are more vigilant". "It is very clear that there were significant gaps and deficiencies in our intelligence, there is no point trying to hide it or deny it. I told it to the head of national intelligence," Erdogan told Reuters in his palace in Ankara, which was targeted during the coup attempt. Related Coverage › Turkey's Erdogan says S&P move political, financial sector strong He said there was no obstacle to extending the state of emergency beyond the initial three months if necessary. Erdogan said the movement of U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, who he blames for masterminding the attempt to seize power, would be treated as "another separatist terrorist organization", drawing a parallel to the state's fight against Kurdish militants over the past three decades. "We will continue the fight ... wherever they might be. These people have infiltrated the state organization in this country and they rebelled against the state," he said, calling the actions of Friday night "inhuman" and "immoral". He said the death toll had risen to 246 people excluding the coup plotters and that 2,185 people were wounded. Soldiers used fighters jets, military helicopters and tanks to strike institutions including parliament, the intelligence agency and Erdogan's palace in Friday's violence in Istanbul and Ankara. (Reporting by Samia Nakhoul, Nick Tattersall, Orhan Coskun, Tulay Karadeniz; Writing by Nick Tattersall) ================================

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