Turkish Military Coup Army Takes Control Of Country, Declares Martial Law; Erdogan Urges Turks Resist Coup To Death
Turkey coup: military attempt to seize power from Erdogan as low flying jets and gunfire heard in Ankara and bridges across Bosphorus in Istanbul closed
As military units patrolled the streets and seized key bridges, the Turkish military declared martial law Friday and said in a statement read out on Turkish television that it had “fully seized control” of the country.
In response, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, speaking from an undisclosed location, surfaced via FaceTime on CNN Turk calling on the Turkish people to take to the public squares and go to the airport. “I’ve never seen anything more powerful than the people,” he said.
The president’s office would not reveal Erdogan’s whereabouts, saying only that he is at a secure location.
A senior US military source tells NBC News that Erdogan, refused landing rights in Istanbul, is reported to be seeking asylum in Germany. The report could not immediately be independently confirmed.
As both sides claimed the upper hand, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim challenged the military’s claim that it was in charge, saying only that there had been “an uprising,” according to the Hurriet Daily News. He said Turkey would never allow any “initiative that would interrupt democracy.”
Meanwhile, Turks poured out into the streets despite the sound of explosions and gunfire in Istanbul.
In Ankara, the U.S. Embassy issued an emergency message reporting that many bridges had been shut down in Istanbul and that shots have been heard in Ankara. It said the government claimed that its security forces were taking action to contain it.
“We encourage U.S. citizens to shelter in place and do not go the U.S. Embassy or Consulates at this time,” the embassy said. “Monitor local press for updates, avoid areas of conflict, and exercise caution if you are in the vicinity of any military or security forces.” The U.S. Air Force operaes out of the Incirlik Air Base in south central Turkey.
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