Coup attempt in Turkey

More turmoil in the Islamic world with reports of an apparent coup attempt in Turkey.

Stuff: Turkish military in attempted coup, prime minister says

A group within Turkey’s military has engaged in what appeared to be an attempted coup, the prime minister says, with military jets flying over the capital and reports of vehicles blocking two major bridges in Istanbul.

Turkey’s military said on Friday it had seized power, but prime minister Binali Yildirim said the attempted coup would be put down.

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.

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.

BBC: Turkey army group announces takeover on TV

An army group in Turkey says it has taken control of the country, with bridges closed in Istanbul and aircraft flying low over Ankara.

PM Binali Yildirim earlier denounced an “illegal action” by a military “group”, stressing it was not a coup. He said that the government remained in charge.

Traffic has been stopped from crossing both the Bosphorus and Fatih Sultan Mehmet bridges in Istanbul.

There are reports of gunshots in the capital Ankara.

Other reports said soldiers were inside buildings of the Turkish state broadcaster in Ankara.

Gunfire was also heard outside Istanbul police HQ and tanks are said to be stationed outside Istanbul airport. All flights are cancelled, reports say.

CNN Turk reported that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was “safe” but did not elaborate.

A statement from the military group read out on NTV television said: “The power in the country has been seized in its entirety.” Who represents the group remains uncertain.

Regardless of the outcome more instability is one of ther last things the Middle East needs. Turkey is closely involved with the civil war in Syria and has had serious tensions with Russia recently.

Jim Waterson Retweeted Laura Pitel

Nothing says “I’m in control” like addressing the nation over Skype on a mobile phone.

Turkish TV broadcasts a message from Erdogan claiming he’s in control and will punish the coup leaders:


Erdogan: I urge the Turkish people to convene at public squares and airports. There is no power higher than the power of the people.

A certain grim irony in Erdogan who shut down free media and tried to shut down social media now having to make his statement via facetime.

NBC reporting US military source claiming Erdogan denied landing rights in Istanbul and seeking asylum in Germany.

Turkish military says in statement: to restore constitutional order, human rights, rule of law and democracy we have taken control.

France 24: Chief of Staff of the Turkish army is dead (unconfirmed)

BREAKING VIDEO: Military Helicopter Opens Fire On Turkish Intelligence Agency HQ