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Coup d’etat in Turkey – Army Seizes Power To Remove Erdogan (UPDATES)

The Turkish military announced today that it seized power in order to protect the democratic order and human rights of Turkey.

In a communication sent via email and published on Turkish television stations, the Turkish army said that all existing external and internal structures of the country will continue, and that the rule of law remains a priority.

CNN TURK reports that several hostages have been taken to army headquarters in Ankara.

President Tayyip Erdogan is safe, according to CNN TURK.

NTV reports that shots were heard near police headquarters in Istanbul. Reuters reported that all flights to Ataturk Airport were canceled.

The US embassy urged Americans who are in Turkey to remain in their homes during the night, amid attempted military coup, officials said.

NTV broadcast images of tanks at the entrance of the Istanbul Ataturk Airport.

Turkish Prime Minister, Binali Yildirim, said that a group within the Turkish army tried to overthrow the government, and asked security forces to do “whatever is necessary”.

“The government elected by the people remains in charge. This government will only go when the people say so.” Yildirim said.

UPDATE 1

Greek military has been mobilized and is on full alert.

UPDATE 2

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, speaking jointly after talks in Moscow, both said they hoped bloodshed would be avoided.

A senior EU source monitoring the situation said: “It looks like a relatively well orchestrated coup by a significant body of the military, not just a few colonels. They’ve got control of the airports and are expecting control over the TV station imminently. They control several strategic points in Istanbul.

“Given the scale of the operation, it is difficult to imagine they will stop short of prevailing. It’s not just a few colonels,” the source repeated.

One European diplomat was dining with the Turkish ambassador to a European capital when guests were interrupted by the pinging of urgent news on their mobile phones.

“This is clearly not some tinpot little coup. The Turkish ambassador was clearly shocked and is taking it very seriously,” the diplomat told Reuters as the dinner party broke up. “However it looks in the morning, this will have massive implications for Turkey. This has not come out of nowhere.”

UPDATE 3

Erdogan appears on CNN TURK

UPDATE 4

Some sources say Erdogan has asked for asylum in Germany. Other sources say that Erdogan’s private jet has landed in Greece.

UPDATE 5

A military helicopter was spotted opening fire above Ankara, Reuters reports, citing witnesses. Other reports claim that a loud explosion occurred at the headquarters of state broadcaster TRT.

UPDATE 6

People are piling into public squares, where a confrontation with the new army leaders may take place

UPDATE 7

Daily Beast: Erdogan now said to be trying to get UK asylum.

Turkish president Tayyip Erdogan is reportedly seeking asylum in Europe, as a military coup continues in Turkey, U.S. military sources tell NBC News. Erdogan’s presidential jet was allegedly denied landing rights at Istanbul’s airport, before heading out of the country. He was then denied asylum in Germany, according to NBC, before heading to London. Addressing Turkey via Facetime, Erdo?an asserted declared, “I am president,” and vowed to crush the opposition forces. He also said “This country can’t be managed from Pennsylvania,” directly linking the coup attempt to U.S.-based exiled imam Fethullah Gülen.

UPDATE 8

Soldiers are reportedly shooting at protesters trying to cross Istanbul’s Bosporus bridge that has been closed since the start of the coup.

UPDATE 9

17 police officers killed in helicopter attack on special forces’ HQ in Ankara – reports

UPDATE 10

Anadolu Agency reports the Turkish parliament in Ankara was ‘bombed from air’.

UPDATE 11

US President Barack Obama and US Secretary of State John Kerry agreed that all parties in Turkey should support the democratically-elected government of Turkey, show restraint, and avoid violence.

UPDATE 12

According to Anadolu, a bomb has been “thrown” by the coup supporters at the Turkish Parliament in Ankara (VIDEO).

UPDATE 13

The Turkish military has stormed the CNN Turk studio as the police and armed forces exchange fire in Istanbul’s Taksim Square.

UPDATE 14

Turkish President Erdogan has successfully landed at Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport amid reports of gunshots and explosions. Greeted by large crowds.

UPDATE 15

At least 60 dead in attempted Turkish coup in Ankara & Istanbul

EU hopes to keep Ankara as a “key partner” following a coup attempt in Turkey, said European Council President Donald Tusk, adding that these events will have a significant impact on the region.

“A military coup has no place in Turkey. Disputes cannot be solved with guns. Events continue to unfold, and the situation is still far from stabilization,” Tusk said. “The key question is what Turkey will come out of this crisis. Consequences will be crucial for the region and for the relations with the EU. Our hope is to keep Turkey as a key partner in all dimensions.”

UPDATE 16

At least 754 members of the armed forces have been detained over the coup attempt, Reuters reported, citing a Turkish official.

29 colonels and five generals were removed from their posts following the coup attempt.

UPDATE 17

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