Arrests after coup attempt in Turkey
Thousands of arrests within Turkey's military and judiciary have been made following a failed coup attempt staged by a faction of the country's army on Friday night. Some 300 people were killed in the attempt, which involved aircraft, bombs and tanks.
20 July 201600:15 GMT
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and US leader Barack Obama discussed the extradition of US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen in a telephone call.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Obama made clear to Erdogan that "the United States doesn't support terrorists. The United States doesn't support individuals who conspire to overthrow democratically elected governments. The United States follows the rule of law."
The spokesman added that materials related to the extradition of the cleric were submitted to US authorities by the Turkish government. US authorities are now reviewing the documents to see if Gulen can be sent to Turkey based on an extradition treaty between Washington and Ankara.
- 00:10 GMT
A group of UN judiciary and human rights experts called on Ankara to respect human rights in the country as the government continues its crackdown on opposition and mulls the reintroduction of the death penalty.
“In times of crisis, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms is more essential than ever,” the conglomerate noted in a joint statement. “We call on the Turkish government to fully respect the rights of the detainees, in particular their right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty and to have effective access to a lawyer of their choice.”
The group which includes the UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, the UN Special Rapporteur on summary or arbitrary executions, and the UN Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment in particular spoke out against the crackdown on the judiciary.
“We are particularly alarmed at the sheer number of judges and prosecutors who have reportedly been suspended and arrested since Saturday,” the experts stressed in the statement. “According to international law, judges can be suspended or removed only on serious grounds of misconduct or incompetence after fair proceedings.”
19 July 201623:18 GMT
The 47-member Council of Europe (CoE) has urged Turkish authorities to wind down the scale of repressions following the failed military takeover.
“The best response to an attempt to destabilize democracy is to respect democratic institutions and the rule of law," said Marina Kaljurand, chair of the CoE's Committee of Ministers and Estonia's Minister for Foreign Affairs, calling on the Turkish government to “abide by the constitutional order.”
Kaljurand stressed that Ankara, being a CoE member country is obliged by “commitments” to ensure the “right to life, which has to be protected in all circumstances, and the right to a fair trial.”
- 22:21 GMT
Washington has stressed the importance of Turkey's Incirlik Air Base in the campaign against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) in Syria and Iraq, that has been suffering operational shortcomings following the failed coup attempt. US Defense Secretary Ash Carter discussed the matter with thr Turkish Minister of Defense Fikri Isik, Pentagon said.
Turkey cut off external electricity to the base at early on Saturday. The US is now relying partly on its own power generation to keep the base going. In the wake of the coup, Turkey also closed airspace around Incirlik, temporarily halting sorties against the Islamic State terror group in Iraq and Syria. Operations resumed Sunday.
The Pentagon added that Isik has expressed “regret” over not being able to fly to Washington to attend a key meeting of the global coalition fighting IS. Dozens of top military officials from the US-based anti-terror coalition will meet Wednesday at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland to discuss the two-year-old mission to oust Islamic State jihadists from Iraq and Syria.
- 21:18 GMT
An exiled Turkish preacher, Fethullah Gulen, who has long been living in the US, has asked Washington to reject any of Ankara's requests to extradite him.
In a statement released Tuesday by a group associated with the cleric, the Alliance for Shared Values, Gulen said that he "urge[d] the US government to reject any effort to abuse the extradition process to carry out political vendettas," Reuters reported.
- 19:23 GMT
In the wake of the attempted military coup against President Erdogan Turkey has dismissed General Galip Mendim who commanded the Turkish Gendarmerie, Anadolu Agency reported.
- 16:09 GMT
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein called on Turkey to stick to the rule of law, obey human rights and strengthen democratic institutions while bringing to justice the plotters of the attempted coup.
“I urge the government of Turkey to respond by upholding the rule of law, by strengthening the protection of human rights and by reinforcing democratic institutions,” Zeid said in a statement.
“Those responsible for the violence must be brought to justice with full respect for fair trial standards,” he said, also stressing the importance of transparency in the administration of justice.
“Turkish authorities are obliged to investigate all reports of violence, regardless of the political leanings of the alleged perpetrators,” he said.
- 15:56 GMT
Turkey's lira weakened beyond 3 to the U.S. dollar on Tuesday after state broadcaster TRT reported the education board had demanded the resignation of all deans working in universities, widening concern about the reach of a government crackdown.
The lira was at 3.0060 to the dollar at 1411 GMT, around 1 percent weaker on the day, with traders citing concern about the purge in the higher education sector. (Reuters)
- 15:55 GMT
Turkey's High Education Board on Tuesday ordered the resignation of 1,577 deans at all universities, state broadcaster TRT reported, part of a wide-ranging purge of dozens of state institutions following a failed coup attempt.
The resignations are being sought at both state and privately run universities, TRT reported. (Reuters)