Turkey: Coup and Erdogan reinforced

The latest news from Turkey, apart from the fact that the coup d'état failed, is that it seems to have consolidated the power of President Erdogan in the short term. But in the long term, will his attempts to take Turkey further away from a secular Government cause more friction and more coups?

This coup, there is no doubt, was a twentieth-century coup, seizing the media stations and bridges but in the twenty-first century, when there are other means of social communication. However the coup was not the Military, with a capital letter. It was not at the general staff level, but one rung just below - colonels and junior admirals and it was easily put down by a call from Erdogan for his supporters to take to the streets and by anti-coup military units.

Nevertheless the attempted coup lit up the night sky in Ankara and Istanbul. The Parliament building was attacked, the dridges over the Bosphorus were closed and helicopters attacked the intelligence Headquarters.

Turkey: Soldiers thought it was an exercise

678 soldiers and ten officers, led by a colonel, were arrested at Ataturk International Airport. Under interrogation, many soldiers stated that they had no idea they were taking part in a coup, rather that they were taking part in a military exercise.

Nevertheless, the authoritarian President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is using the failed coup as a means to gain even more autocratic power. There are rumors that he will use this failed coup to appoint himself President for life.

The text issued by those organizing the coup read as follows:

"Turkish Armed Forces have completely taken over the administration of the country to reinstate constitutional order, human rights and freedoms, the rule of law and general security that was damaged. All international agreements are still valid. We hope that all of our good relationships with all countries will continue."

The result will be a purge of all elements not strictly allied to Erdogan, and that means that Erdogan's plan to make Turkey more Islamist will proceed.

Goodbye European Union.

Erdogan crackdown

The failed coup in Turkey has seen President Erdogan interrupt his holiday and launch a crackdown against the military and justice system.

Reports from Ankara state that 2.,839 soldiers, including officers, have been arrested and 2.745 judges have been dismissed.

There are two army generals among the coup forces. 161 civilians were killed, 104 coup forces were killed and 1,440 civilians were wounded.


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Author`s name Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey