: Erdogan now can issue direct orders to military commanders

17:30 Jul. 31, 2016

Erdogan now can issue direct orders to military commanders

Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan gives a speech commemorating those killed and wounded during a failed July 15 military coup, in Ankara, Turkey, July 29, 2016. (AP Photo)

Turkey's president issues decree bringing military further under civilian authority

A new presidential decree issued by Recep Tayyip Erdogan has introduced sweeping reforms to Turkey's military following the failed coup attempt on July 15.

According to the new document, Turkey's armed forces are now brought under civilian authority, giving the president and prime minister the power to give direct orders to military commanders.

Read also Turkish authorities to shut down dozens of media outlets

The decree also dismisses almost 1,400 army personnel, including several top military officials. It puts all military hospitals under the authority of the health ministry instead of the military, and expands the Supreme military Council to include the deputy prime ministers and the justice, foreign and interior ministers.

Since the military coup attempt Turkey has detained, arrested and dismissed thousands of its citizens, allegedly connected with the religious Fethullah Gülen movement, who had been accused by President Erdogan of orchestrating the mutiny.

On July 21, Turkey's president promised to restructure the military and give it "fresh blood," adding a new coup was possible, but would not be easy because authorities were now more vigilant.

Turkey's Western allies have condemned the July 15 military coup attempt, in which Erdogan has said 237 people were killed and more than 2,100 were wounded, but have been rattled by the scale of the crackdown since.

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