Military Coup In Turkey: Erdogan’s Govt Overthrowned, Martial Laws Imposed

The Turkish military has taken over the government and imposed martial law, according to an announcement read by an anchor on state broadcaster TRT.

The statement was made on behalf of the “Peace in the Nation” council, the announcer said. “The political administration that has lost all legitimacy has been forced to withdraw,” the anchor said.
Early Saturday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan urged people to take to the streets and stand up to the military during the coup.
“Go to the streets and give them their answer,” he told residents during a Facetime interview on CNN Turk.
“I am coming to a square in Ankara. … This was done from outside the chain of command,” Erdogan said of the military. “Those who are responsible, we will give them the necessary punishment,” he said. It was not clear from where he was speaking.
Earlier, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told broadcaster A Haber that some military units have attempted a coup. Yildirim vowed the coup attempt would not succeed.

Turkish security officers detain police officers, seen in black, in Istanbul, during a security shutdown on the Bosphorus Bridge.
A military airplane is seen flying over Turkey. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is urging people to take to the streets and stand up to the military.
Turkish security officers detain police officers, seen in black, in Istanbul, during a security shutdown on the Bosphorus Bridge.
A military airplane is seen flying over Turkey. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is urging people to take to the streets and stand up to the military.

He told state news agency Anadolu the coup is “an attempt against democracy and the will of the people. Those who attempted this will pay the heaviest price.”
There have been no independent verification of the claims by the military or the government. It is unclear who is in charge in Turkey. A curfew has been imposed in the country by the military.
The military has issued statements, which have been published in some Turkish media, and not others, and reported by the Reuters news agency, claiming it has “fully seized control of Turkey” to maintain democratic order, that rule of law must remain a priority and international relations must remain. The statements have not been distributed through regular web channels.
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A CNN producer said there were 200 to 300 residents in Taksim Square in Istanbul. Some of them were waving Turkish flags. About 100 police officers were shooting off tear gas, trying to disperse the crowd.
At least one army tank and one other military vehicle were at the square.
Shots have been fired and explosions have been heard in Ankara as the coup continues, according to the U.S. Embassy in Ankara.
All flights at Istanbul Ataturk Airport have been suspended and Americans are urged to stay where they are.
The U.S. Embassy said in a statement: “We urge U.S. citizens to contact family and friends to let them know you are safe. We have seen reports that social media is blocked … We encourage U.S. citizens to shelter in place and do not go the U.S. Embassy or Consulates at this time.”
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told reporters in Moscow that he has been given reports about what is going on. “I don’t have any details. I hope there will be peace, stability and continuity in Turkey,” he said.
A report from the U.S. Embassy in Ankara said military-appearing jets had been flying low over the city and Istanbul for about an hour.
One tweet showed a military jet flying extremely low over the capital Ankara.
Two bridges in Istanbul are closed in one direction by the military. Cars are flowing from the European side of the city to the Asian, but soldiers and military vehicles are blocking the path to the European side.
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Erdogan is the co-founder of Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). He was elected Prime Minister in 2003. Under his rule, Turkey became a powerhouse in the Middle East. His reign came to an end in 2014, and his own party’s rules prevented him from seeking a fourth term.
So, he ran for president — and won. Before this, the president of Turkey was a largely ceremonial role, but Erdogan tried to change that by altering the constitution to give him more power.
The 2015 election resulted in a hung Parliament, leading to sweeping anti-government protests and terror attacks. Turkey held a snap election, and with that, Erdogan’s AK Party regained control.
Under Erdogan, who is extremely conservative, religion had started to play a more important role in Turkey, which is a largely secular country. He was active in Islamist circles in the 1970s and 1980s.
Erdogan is open about his dislike of social media. Sites such as YouTube and Facebook are frequently blacked out in the country.
 If successful, the overthrow of President Tayyip Erdogan, who has ruled Turkey since 2003, would amount to one of the biggest shifts in power in the Middle East in years.
Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said the elected government remained in office. There was no immediate word from Erdogan. The Turkish sister channel of CNN said he was “safe”.
The armed forces had taken power in the country to protect the democratic order and to maintain human rights, the military said in a statement sent by email and reported on Turkish TV channels.
All of Turkey’s existing foreign relations would be maintained and the rule of law would remain the priority, it said.
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.
Turkey, a NATO member with the second biggest military in the Western alliance, is one of the most important allies of the U.S. in the fight against Islamic State.
It is a principal backer of opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in that country’s civil war, and host to two million Syrian refugees.
The country 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.
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 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, and which has a history of military coups.
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.”
Those behind the attempted coup would pay the highest price, he added.
Footage on local television channels showed military vehicles blocking bridges over the Bosphorus in Istanbul and tanks deployed at the city’s main airport.
In the capital Ankara, warplanes and helicopters roared overhead. A Reuters journalist heard gunshots.
A Turkish official who did not want to be named said soldiers had been deployed in other cities in Turkey, but did not specify which ones.
Dogan News Agency reported the national police directorate had summoned all police to duty in Ankara.

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