Turkish Coup Anniversary: Erdogan Accused of Using It to Create 'Dictatorship'

Posted July 15, 2017

Turkey is set to extend the state of emergency on July 18 after an advisory decision of the country's top security board, the prime minister said, as the Turkish people are set to mark the first anniversary of the bloody coup attempt.

Erdogan was speaking nearly a year to the day since the July 15 attempted military coup.

Speaking about the ongoing crisis involving Qatar and four Arab nations, including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt and Bahrain, Erdogan said that Turkey was not part of the rift and that the country wanted to promote "dialogue and peace" in the Gulf region, the BBC reported on Wednesday.

Some 7,563 people were fired in the latest cull, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported, with almost 350 retired army members also stripped of their rank. "We will lift the emergency rule only when we no longer need to fight against terrorism".

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On July 15, 2016, Turkish authorities said a military coup attempt took place in the country as a group of servicemen announced about transition of power to them.

"Journalists commit crimes too and when they do the judiciary makes the necessary assessment", he said.

Last weekend, hundreds of thousands joined an opposition rally, marking the culmination of a "march for justice" from Ankara to Istanbul led by the leader of the main opposition party, the CHP. The three-week protest walk from Ankara to Istanbul demanding democratic reforms attracted increasingly large crowds, culminating in a massive street protest last weekend in Istanbul that drew a crowd estimated at over 1 million. "We are concerned that, under the state of emergency, at least nine Americans and one consulate employee have been detained and imprisoned on what appear to be false charges".

"I reiterate my condemnation of the despicable putsch and its perpetrators", he said, while decrying a government "witch hunt to weed out anyone it deems disloyal" to Erdogan "and his regime". It is one of the many works to keep the memory of the martyrs alive. Mr Gulen denies the allegation.

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"The rumors aren't true at all", the 79-year-old cleric said in an interview with Reuters.

"This is how they have organised and attempted the coup as a mob".

Erdogan said the Turks did not "want the European Union anymore" and believed its approach to Turkey was "insincere".

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