Turkey Coup: Turkish coup largely fails as citizens answer President's call to take to the streets (photos)

11:17 Jul. 16, 2016

Turkish coup largely fails as citizens answer President's call to take to the streets (photos)

People, loyal to the government, some holding Turkish flags celebrate in Istanbul, Saturday, July 16, 2016 (AP photo)

Erdogan says plotters "will pay for what they did"

An attempted Turkish military coup appeared to crumble on Saturday after crowds answered President Tayyip Erdogan's call to take to the streets to support him, Reuters reports.

At least 90 people were killed in violence that erupted on Friday after a faction of the armed forces attempted to seize power, officials said.

Erdogan, who had been holidaying on the southwest coast when the coup was launched, flew into Istanbul before dawn on Saturday and was shown on TV among a crowd of supporters outside Ataturk Airport.

The uprising was an "act of treason", and those responsible would pay a heavy price, he told reporters at a hastily arranged news conference. Arrests of officers were under way and it would go higher up the ranks, culminating in the cleansing of the military, he said.

Addressing a crowd of thousands of flag-waving supporters at the airport later, Erdogan said the government remained at the helm, although disturbances continued in Ankara.

Gunfire and explosions had rocked both Istanbul and Ankara in a chaotic night after soldiers took up positions in both cities and ordered state television to read out a statement declaring they had taken power.

Read also World leaders react to Turkey's attempted military coup

Around 50 soldiers involved in the coup surrendered on one of the bridges across the Bosphorus Strait in Istanbul after dawn on Saturday, abandoning their tanks with their hands raised in the air. Reuters witnesses saw government supporters attack the pro-coup soldiers who had surrendered.

 

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