- WARNING GRAPHIC IMAGES
- Turkish troops launched an unsuccessful military coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government
- At least 1,000 are wounded in the bloody uprising as Erdogan supporters clashed with the military rebels on Friday
- The Turkish parliamentary building was bombed and both police and citizens were gunned down in the streets
- President Erdogan has sworn revenge on those responsible as he blamed Fethullah Gulen in Philadelphia
- ‘What is being perpetrated is a rebellion and a treason,’ he said warning there would be a ‘heavy price’ to pay
Hannah Parry For Dailymail.com
Darren Boyle for MailOnline
15:18 EST, 15 July 2016
03:56 EST, 16 July 2016
More than 1,500 rebels have been detained after their failed military coup that killed at least 200 and wounded more than 1,000 as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed revenge for the bloody uprising.
Erdogan made his triumphant return back to Istanbul after his forces quelled the coup on Friday evening, as he warned that the members of the military behind the plot to oust him would pay a ‘heavy price for their treason’.
Some 104 plotters were killed after a coup attempt to bring down the Turkish government, while 90 people – 41 of them police and 47 are civilians – fell as ‘martyrs’.
President Erdogan meanwhile used Twitter to call on supporters to prevent any additional military action, adding: ‘We should keep on owning the streets no matter at what stage because a new flare-up could take place at any moment.’
The rebel army faction – who call themselves the ‘Peace Council’ – said they were trying to overthrow the government to ‘protect human rights’ and restore democracy from Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party, AKP, which has repeatedly faced criticism from human rights groups and Western allies over its brutal crackdowns on anti-government protesters.
However, Erdogan has blamed his old scapegoat, Fethullah Gulen for orchestrating the uprising. Muslim cleric Gulen, the president’s rival who lives in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania, U.S. as the head of a billion dollar religious movement, has often been blamed for political unrest in Turkey.
The five hours of chaos began when two busloads of soldiers burst into the headquarters of the state-run TRT news agency, taking news off the air and replacing it with a stream of weather forecasts.
After launching the coup, the Turkish military imposed a curfew on civilians telling them to stay in their homes, but Erdogan called on supporters to ignore the order and take to the streets, which is thought to have caused the army to relinquish control.
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More than 1,500 rebels have been detained after their failed military coup that killed at least 200 as Turkish President Erdogan vows revenge for the bloody uprising (pictured: Up to 100 rebel soldiers surrendered on Bosphorus Bridge after their failed uprising)
Army personnel who had earlier blocked off Istanbul’s Bosphorus Bridge raise their hands in surrender as civilians and police take control
Clothes and weapons beloging to soldiers involved in the coup attempt that have now surrendered lie on the ground abandoned on Bosphorus Bridge
People shout at the soliders involved in the coup attempt who have surrendered on Bosphorus Bridge following their surrender
The Turkish president warned that the members of the military behind the plot to oust him would pay a ‘heavy price for their treason’ as he blamed his rival Fethullah Gulen for orchestrating the uprising (pictured, soldiers surrender)
Around 100 Turkish soldiers surrender on Turkey’s Bosphorus Bridge after intense fighting with forces loyal to the government
Turkish soldiers, arrested by civilians, are handed to police officers in Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, early Saturday, after the coup
A man lays down in front of a tank on the approach to Ataturk airport in Istanbul as citizens took to the streets to oppose the military coup
The man then stood up and took off his shirt in an effort the present the tank from taking position in the airport
A Turkish policeman and other people stand atop of a military vehicle in Ankara after crushing the rebellion
People climb on tanks after around a hundred soldiers occupying Bosphorus Bridge surrendered in Istanbul, Turkey on July 16
People carry a man shot during clashes with Turkish military at the entrance to the Bosphorus bridge in Istanbul
After the uprising was crushed in the early hours of Saturday morning, Erdogan told the gathered masses at Ataturk Airport that those loyal to Gulen had ‘penetrated the Armed Forces and the police, among other government agencies, over the past 40 years’.
‘What is being perpetrated is a rebellion and a treason,’ Erdogan said. ‘They will pay a heavy price for their treason to Turkey.’
Up to 100 rebel soldiers surrendered on Bosphorus Bridge after their failed uprising. At least 1,563 connected have been arrested in connection with the dramatic coup which lasted approximately five hours.
New British foreign secretary Boris Johnson said on Twitter that he has spoken to Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu following the attempted military coup, adding: ‘I underlined UK support for the democratic elected government and institutions.’
Explosions and gunfire erupted in Istanbul and Ankara on Friday night during the coup which killed at least 200 people in the army’s bid to overthrow the Islamic government.
Elsewhere troops opened fire on civilians attempting to cross the river Bosporus in Istanbul in protest to the military coup, while a bomb exploded at the parliament building according to the state’s press agency as the security situation in the country becomes more perilous.
Colonel Muharrem Kose reportedly led the Turkish military forces in the uprising.
Kose had recently been kicked out of the army, from his position as head of the military’s legal advisory department, over his links to Gulen. He was killed during the clashes with Erdogan’s supporters, sources report.
At least 90died and more than a thousand others were injured during the clashes with Turkish military, pictured is a man shot at the entrance to the Bosphorus bridge in Istanbul
A wounded man is carried away during the attempted coup – one of hundreds injured during the blasts and gunfire battles between rebel soldiers and those loyal to Erdogan
Unarmed civilians carried a man believed to have been shot by Turkish troops away from the Bosphorus bridge in Istanbul
As many as 17 police officers are believed to have died after military helicopters attacked their headquarters in central Ankara, pictured
Turkey’s parliamentary building was bombed during the coup, as this picture shows the devastation from an explosive device
Windows were smashed and doors were blown off their hinges after the bomb on the country’s parliamentary building
RECEP TAYYIP ERDOGAN: THE TURKISH FOOTBALLER-TURNED-POLITICIAN WHO IS SEEKING EU MEMBERSHIP
Erdogan was elected president in 2014 after becoming prime minister in 2003 and served as the Mayor of Instanbul from 1994 to 1998.
He founded the Justice and Development Party, known as the AKP in 2001 and led it through three general elections. He then stepped down as leader in 2003 when he was elected President.
He comes from an Islamist political background and is described as a conservative democrat and has proved to be a divisive character in Turkish society.
Erdogan has become increasingly unpopular with more educated and modernised people but he has denied wanting to impose Islamic values in the country.
He has said he is committed to secularism but supports people’s rights to express their religious beliefs openly.
The party which he founded, AKP, suffered a dip in the polls last summer, but regained popularity again after Turkey’s worst suicide bombing in history last November.
He remains well-liked among the more traditional Muslim community in Turkey, who supported his bids to criminalize adultery and introduce alcohol-free zones in the country although they ultimately failed.
Mr Erdogan owes much of his political success to the stable economy over the last decade.
The unrest in Turkey, which straddles Europe and the Middle East, is of concern to the West as it is on the frontier of the global battle with ISIS and has been used as a base to launch strikes against the terrorist group in Syria.
While the coup was successfully defeated, instability in the area could hamper efforts to tackle the extremist group which has been behind some of the worst terrorist attacks in recent history.
The coup will also be a blow for Turkey’s ambitions to join the European Union.
Erdogan had demanded membership of the EU as the price for stemming the tide of refugees pouring over his country’s borders into Europe. In exchange for the visa deal and £2.2billion in aid, he agreed to step up border controls, tackle people-smuggling gangs and re-admit failed asylum seekers who had entered Europe from Turkey.
Turkish politicians had argued that Turkey is ‘a major European power’ and with the exit of Britain, the EU will need to include the country as a member.
However, the unrest in the past 24 hours is unlikely to help its case as concerns over the stability of the country and its human rights record surface once again.
As military took to the streets, Erdogan had urged his supporters to ignore a curfew and take back control of the country.
Tanks and armoured personnel carriers tried to seize strategic points in Istanbul and Ankara but were faced down by unarmed civilians who lay down in front of the heavy armour.
Police special forces headquarters was also hit and was razed to the ground. Other witnesses reported attack helicopters firing machine guns in the capital Ankara in a bid to depose the Islamic government.
There were also reports that a Turkish Air Force F-16 had shot down a Sikorsky helicopter over Ankara. The government claimed the jet destroyed the helicopter which had been ‘hijacked by coup plotters’.
In Takism square, around 30 rebel soldiers surrendered following a gun battle with police loyal to Erdogan. A number of F-16 fighter jets had screamed across the square at low level blasting the area with a sonic boom.
During the night, both the civilian government and the military claimed they were in control of the country, with reports of sporadic gunfire and explosions.
In a statement, the army faction said that they took action ‘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 Turkish military has also long seen its role as safeguarding Turkey’s secularist agenda, and has staged numerous coup’s over the last 60 years when it feels the government’s stance is moving too far away from that.
The military said that ‘all international agreements and commitments will remain. We pledge that good relations with all world countries will continue’.
President Recep Erdogan, pictured centre, made a triumphant return to Istanbul following a botched military coup in Turkey
President Erdogan (pictured after the unsuccessful coup) has vowed revenge on those who tried to oust him in a bloody military coup that killed 42 people as his supporters clashed with the rebel forces in the streets of Turkey
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan is seen amid his supporters at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, Turkey on July 16 after his loyal forces successfully crushed the uprising
Huge crowds of supporters of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan cheered as he left the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, while hundreds of rebels were arrested
Thousands gathered, many carrying Turkish flags, in Ordu, Turkey after a rebel faction of the military unsuccessfully staged a coup
Protesters blocked the tanks from seizing the airport, which allowed President Erdogan to make his triumphant return to Istanbul
Turkish army’s tank entered the Ataturk Airport during the coup where witnesses say they heard explosive noises
People climbs on top of the military’s tanks after a group of soldiers involved in the coup attempt were neutralized by police
Turkish citizens walk across the now-opened bridge after the horrors of last night, since the coup was successfully crushed
But the nation’s national intelligence released its own statement saying the coup had been ‘repelled’, although troops and heavy armour had continued to hold strategic locations in Ankara.
Meanwhile, Erdogan made it clear he believes rival Gulen is behind the attack.
Gulen’s nonprofit organization, the Alliance for Shared Values, denies any involvement and condemned the actions of the Turkish military.
Gulen, 75, was initially a close ally of Erdogan, who rose from the mayor of Istanbul to prime minister before he became president in 2014.
But the two fell out over a massive corruption scandal in 2013 that cost the country $100billion in a campaign thought to be initiated by Gulen’s followers against Erdogan’s closest allies.
Trained as an imam, Fethullah Gulen gained notice in Turkey some 50 years ago, promoting a philosophy that blended a mystical form of Islam with staunch advocacy of democracy, education, science and interfaith dialogue.
Erdogan has long accused Gulen of plotting to overthrow the officially secular government from a gated 26-acre compound in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains, which has a population of about 1,100.
The President, who was on vacation in the resort town of Marmaris when the coup began, issued a statement to CNN tonight referring to a ‘parallel structure’ behind the coup, a reference to Gulen’s followers.
Amid the chaotic scenes, soldiers also seized control of the headquarters of the Dogan Media Group. A journalist broadcasting live on the station said she did not know how much longer she will be able to continue on the air.
Eyewitnesses have reported shots being fired in Ankara several hours after members of the military attempted their coup
Troops have established checkpoints across strategic locations in cities around Turkey and have imposed martial law
After several hours of protests, protesters began clashing with troops amid reports that civilians have been shot by soldiers
All flights in and out of Ataturk Airport were suspended during the unrest while while military aircraft were also seen flying over Ankara, the capital.
A Los Angeles man trapped inside a Turkish airport has described hearing shots ring out and screaming passengers trample over each other as a bloody military coup raged on outside.
Milton Smith, 37, who had a nine hour layover in Istanbul en route to South Africa, told DailyMail.com he was in a café when he heard a gunshot and people began running, ‘screaming, crying and trampling’ over each other.
‘I didn’t know what was happening,’ he said. ‘I was enjoying a beverage, heard the shot and heard screams and people running and I ran too.
‘I looked at possible exits and spaces to hide as necessary. We’ve felt two possible bombs felt like earthquakes.’
An LA attorney, Ayda Akalin, whose family is trapped at Ataturk Airport, told DailyMail.com exclusively that her loved ones heard an ‘explosion sound of some type’.
She added that her family, along with many other travelers, were stuck in the gate and the hallway at the airport.
Turkey has now reopened Ataturk Airport and announced that flights are running again.
Corinna Stukan, who is stuck at the airport, told DailyMail.com: ‘People are exhausted but the situation has calmed down a lot. There are rumors that we can check in for some flights soon!’
Internet access within Turkey was also severely restricted with social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook blocked.
U.S. President Barack Obama issued a message urging all parties in Turkey to support the democratically-elected government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan – the Justice and Development Party (AKP).
He urged them to avoid violence or bloodshed amid the military takeover of the key NATO ally.
Obama discussed the developments by telephone with Secretary of State John Kerry, who was traveling in Moscow for separate meetings with senior Russian officials on Syria.
In a separate statement, Kerry said the U.S. viewed the ‘very fluid situation’ in Turkey with the ‘gravest concern’.
Civilians lay in the street in front of tanks to prevent them from rolling through Ankara as part of the ongoing military coup
Civilians took shelter behind a number of vans near the Turkish radio and television offices after an explosion ripped through the building
President Erdogan used ‘FaceTime’ to talk to a journalist on private run media to claim he was still in full control of the country
During the bizarre broadcast , Erdogan called on people to resist the military and ignore the military’s curfew and take to the streets
Eyewitnesses have posted photographs of a large explosion in the capital Ankara amid the Turkish military takeover
Supporters of Erdogan clambered on top of a tank in Ankara to prevent it from taking a strategic position in the city
Turkey’s government has called for people to take to the streets in order to protest against the military’s attempted takeover
Turkish intelligence sources said the coup had been repelled although heavily armed troops continued to guard the streets
Erdogan urged his supporters to block the military and prevent them from seizing control of the country as part of the coup
During the five hours of chaos, which began when two busloads of soldiers burst into the headquarters of state run TRT news agency, taking news off the air and replacing it with a stream of weather forecasts, explosions were heard across Ankara.
Turkey’s state-run news agency reported 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.
Troops rounded up police officers loyal to the government, according to witnesses. CNN Turkey showed two military vehicles and a group of soldiers lined up at the entrance of one of the bridges in Turkey’s biggest city.
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.
A tank in central Ankara drove over a car as protesters clambered aboard preventing it from moving across the city in Turkey’s coup
Police gathered near the Turkish General Staff building in Ankara as the country edged closer to a potential civil war
Erdogan’s supporters ignored the military’s curfew and assembled in front of soldiers who were stationed in Istanbul’s Taksim square
Soldiers remained calm in Taksim square in Istanbul as supporters of President Erdogan clambered on top of statues in protest to the coup
The military said they have moved due to ‘rising autocratic rule and increased terrorism’.
Media reports said ambulances were seen in front of Turkey’s military headquarters. Gunshots were reportedly heard near the presidential palace in Ankara.
Yildirim on Friday denounced what he said was an ‘illegal attempt’ by elements in the military after bridges were partially shut down in Istanbul and jets flew low over Ankara.
‘We are working on the possibility of an attempt. We will not allow this attempt,’ he told NTV television by telephone, without expanding on the nature of the move but saying it was by a group in the Turkish military.
‘Those who are in this illegal act will pay the highest price,’ he added, saying it would not be correct to describe the move as a ‘coup’.
Yildirim did not provide details, but said Turkey would never allow any ‘initiative that would interrupt democracy’.
The mayor of Ankara also reportedly called people onto the streets.
The Istanbul based first army commander Umit Dundar claimed those involved in the coup ‘represent a small group’ claiming ‘there is no cause for concern’.
He told the Anadolu state-run news agency: ‘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.’
A man covered in blood points towards the Bosphorus bridge where troops opened fire on civilians protesting against the coup
Injured civilians were evacuated from the scene by ambulance as people stood up against troops involved in the military coup
Tanks and armoured personnel carriers protected barricades with dozens of infantry troops in support of the coup
Soldiers fired shots into the air to disperse supporters of Recep Erdogan from Taskim Square in central Istanbul
Tank drivers used their massive machines to drive over cars which had been used to block the road in central Istanbul
Commanders ordered their tanks to continue forward despite being blocked by civilians who parked their cars in the street
Thousands of people took to the streets after Prime Minister Binali Yildirim branded those involved in the coup as ‘traitors’
Protesters tried to block the military tanks using their cars, however, some commanders refused to stop their mission
Erdogan said the uprising attempt was being run by a minority within the armed forces and said it would be met with the ‘necessary response’.
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 responded 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.’
In a statement sent during the coup by email and reported on Turkish TV channels, the military said all of Turkey’s existing foreign relations would be maintained and that the rule of law would remain the priority.
The military statement went on to say that: ‘A curfew has been imposed until a second order.’
They signed the statement on behalf of the ‘Council for Peace in the Homeland’.
Turkey’s top general Hulusi Akar was taken hostage at the military headquarters in the capital Ankara after an attempt to bring down the government, but was rescued during the night.
Thousands of supporters in the city of Yozgat, about 100 miles east of Ankara, demonstrated against the attempted military coup
Also in Bayburt, which is 50 miles south of the Black Sea, thousands of people protested in front of the Town Hall against the military
Erdogan, pictured centre, said he was going to ‘cleanse the military’ accusing those soldiers involved in the coup of ‘treason’
Witnesses photographed a Turkish F-16 flying a combat air patrol over Ankara, with prime minister Yidirim promising those responsible for the coup would be ‘punished in the hardest way’
Tanks and armoured personnel carriers seized the main airport in Ankara as well as strategic bridges in Istanbul
HISTORY OF TURKISH COUPS: MILITARY HAS PREVIOUS HISTORY OF OVERTHROWING THE CIVILIAN GOVERNMENT
The Turkish army regards itself as the protector of Turkish democracy, a philosophy made up of secular ideals created by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk – the founder of the modern Turkish Republic.
There have been four major coups in the past 50 years with thousands killed as a result of military intervention and social and political unrest.
The first coup took place in 1960 as political tension reached boiling point between the government, led by prime minister Adnan Menderes and president Celal Bayar, the opposing parties and the armed forces.
The administration began to re-open mosques and opened new religious schools as well as calling for people to pray in Arabic rather than Turkish. It also imposed new press laws banning critical articles in newspapers.
After periods of unrest Menderes was forced to employ martial law. The government was eventually toppled and the president, prime minister and several cabinet members were arrested. Menderes was later executed.
While there was not a coup in 1971, events in this period would contribute to military intervention in nine years time.
Turkey had sunk into a recession, with their currency failing – causing protests in the streets with often violent demonstrations and attacks from right-wing organisations.
The military intervened and prime minister, Suleyman Demirel resigned with a right-wing temporary government put in place.
The 1970s were a time of immense political and social unrest in Turkey with thousands being killed and 11 prime ministers taking control.
A military coup was announced on TV in September 1980 with the army establishing martial law.
The government was dissolved and naval officer Bulend Ulusu became prime minister for three year,s before he was succeeded by Turgut Ozal.
While there was a stability that came with the military rule but hundreds of thousands of people were executed, tortured or went missing during this period.
After the Islamist Welfare Party took power in 1996 the armed forces suggested a series of policies that it urged the Government to take.
The following year it ensured changes including a headscarf ban at universities and an eight-year education programme to ensure that young people did not enrol at religious schools – were put in place.
Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan resigned and was slapped with a five-year ban from politics.