Turkey PM says 161 dead in coup bid, almost 3,000 detained

Published: July 16, 2016
A Turkish military stands guard near the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016.  PHOTO: REUTERS

A Turkish military stands guard near the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

ANKARA / ISTANBUL: Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said Saturday 161 people were killed in the coup attempt against the government, with 2,839 soldiers now detained on suspicion of involvement.

Yildirim, speaking outside his Cankaya palace in Ankara and flanked by top general Hulusi Akar who was held during the coup attempt, also described the putsch bid as a “black stain” on Turkish democracy. He added that 1,440 people had been wounded.

A Turkish army faction backed by tanks and fighter jets staged an attempted coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday but the strongman returned to Istanbul defiantly claiming to have regained control.

The toll 161 did not include the assailants, he emphasised. Turkey’s acting army chief Umit Dundar had earlier said 104 putschists had been killed.

Yildirim blamed the coup attempt on the supporters of US-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, who Ankara has for years accused of working to overthrow the authorities and wants to see brought to justice.

The United States has shown little interest so far to Turkey’s requests for his extradition.

“Fethullah Gulen is the leader of a terrorist organisation,” the premier said.

“Whichever country is behind him is not a friend of Turkey and in a serious war against Turkey,” he added.

World powers urge ‘stability’ in Turkey

Erdogan predicted that the move would fail and crowds of supporters of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) came out onto the streets to try to block the putsch.

Crowds of people, some waving Turkish flags, gathered in major squares in Istanbul and Ankara to show support for the elected government.


After hours of chaos unseen in decades, the president ended uncertainty over his whereabouts, flying into Istanbul airport in the early hours of the morning where he made a defiant speech and was greeted by hundreds of supporters.

Erdogan denounced the coup attempt as “treachery” but said he was carrying out his functions and would keep on working “to the end”.

“What is being perpetrated is a treason and a rebellion. They will pay a heavy price for this act of treason,” Erdogan said at Istanbul’s airport. “We will not leave our country to occupiers.”

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addresses during an attempted coup in Istanbul, Turkey July16, 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

Turkish military chief rescued after being held during coup bid

The head of Turkey’s armed forces was rescued after being held hostage during the attempted coup.

Hulusi Akar had been held by rebel soldiers during the attempted coup, Turkish broadcasters said.

Turkish army chief Hulusi Akar. PHOTO: AFP

Turkey blames IS for Istanbul airport carnage that killed 41

Social media access restricted 

Access was restricted in Turkey on Friday to Facebook Inc, Twitter Inc  and Alphabet Inc’s YouTube shortly after news that a military coup was under way, according to two internet monitoring groups.

Turkey Blocks, a group that monitors internet shutdowns in the country, and Dyn, which monitors internet performance and traffic globally, both reported it was difficult or impossible to access social media services in Turkey.

Fethullah Gulen, the arch-enemy of Turkey’s president


After serving as prime minister from 2003, Erdogan was elected president in 2014 with plans to alter the constitution to give the previously ceremonial presidency far greater executive powers.

Attempted coup in Turkey: what we know so far

Turkey has enjoyed an economic boom during his time in office and has dramatically expanded its influence across the region. But opponents say his rule has become increasingly authoritarian.

Pakistan expresses solidarity with Turkish people

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Syed Tariq Fatemi telephoned Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavusoglu and expressed solidarity.

The Turkish foreign minister thanked the government and the people of Pakistan for showing resolve to stand by democracy in Turkey.

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Reader Comments (65)

  • Brainy Bhaijan
    Jul 16, 2016 - 1:46AM

    This is bad news for Pakistan because it will give an additional boost to the people sitting in the GHQ to push for a takeover.
    MQM is getting ready for a come back because these parties thrive in Martial Laws.Recommend

  • Sarcasm
    Jul 16, 2016 - 1:55AM

    That’s why gulf states don’t make strong army Recommend

  • BCCI
    Jul 16, 2016 - 2:15AM

    Ahh..This is called ‘Tradition’.. Now time for “Le Protector” Raheel to show some action :)Recommend

  • TooTrue
    Jul 16, 2016 - 2:17AM

    This is excellent news. Turkey to rid itself of its Islamist President. Recommend

  • sabi
    Jul 16, 2016 - 2:19AM

    Bravo! Power hungry greedy generals have conquered their own country. Turkey now thousands years away joining EU.
    Shame shame shame.Recommend

  • M. Emad
    Jul 16, 2016 - 2:23AM

    Turkish military should install secular democracy in Turkey like the Egypt Military.Recommend

  • Counterpoint
    Jul 16, 2016 - 2:42AM

    Turkey is another quasi Democratic banana republic controlled by a few rowdy military junta. They effectively supported IS by buying oil and becoming a gateway for militants to Syria. Recommend

  • salman
    Jul 16, 2016 - 2:45AM

    Dear Raheel, what are you waiting for in Pakistan ?Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jul 16, 2016 - 2:56AM

    World should never support Turkish army’s illegal coup. Recommend

  • M.S.
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:01AM

    Success of Turkish army will encourage our army too. Let’s hope it remains bloodless in both countries.Recommend

  • M. Emad
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:07AM

    Congratulations, saviour of Turkey . . .Recommend

  • khan of karachi
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:07AM

    Erdogan has paid the price for not supporting Kashmiris.Recommend

  • umiff
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:11AM

    Shame on usa. They couldnt see turkey sussecfull!!! Keep folllowing them they goner drstroy all muslim countriesRecommend

  • M. Emad
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:14AM

    Which country next ?Recommend

  • Loose ball
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:18AM

    The coup in turkey must have shaken Nawaz Sharif in his boots. Another Muslim country destroyed. Project ‘annihilation of Muslim countries’ going on track.Recommend

  • Raj - USA
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:19AM

    “MOVE ON TURKEY” !!!!!!!!!Recommend

  • Ih
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:26AM

    Warning to Pakistani politicians tread carefully .Recommend

  • simba
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:29AM

    Erdogan looks like he will end like Gaddafi. The leader who hated Western world and praised muslim countries seems to take refuge some western country.Recommend

  • M. Emad
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:34AM

    According to BBC, ‘President’ Erdogan fled Turkey (Turkish local time: 1:30).Recommend

  • True
    Jul 16, 2016 - 3:57AM

    I wonder which BBC are you listening to. Erdgan has given a call to people on social media to come out and fail the coup. Masses are now on the roads to save democracy. It’s only a small group in the army who have gone berserk and trigger happy people like you are jumping in joy.@M. Emad: Recommend

  • Uza Syed
    Jul 16, 2016 - 4:06AM

    @Ch. Allah Daad: correction! It’s the other way around, Turkey is more important for the world than those thugs pretending democracy. It is a great example for others to emulate in order to save their country from thieves and exploiters of the people by fakery disguised as democracy.Recommend

  • Master
    Jul 16, 2016 - 4:25AM

    This is so sad to see happening, Pakistan must uphold with the vision of our fore-fathers who fought independence for true democratic, liberal and Islamic democracy. We must repel, at all cost, such incident which lead Pakistan to a coup.

    We must promise ourselves to live with the vision of Jinnah, to live with honor, dignity and pride–which our fore fathers aimed for us. And above all, we should make effort to stick to the democracy and repel coups like this in Pakistan.Recommend

  • Haider
    Jul 16, 2016 - 4:29AM

    It seems army is failing and first time martial law will be reverted…Its not army job to rule…Bravo to people of turkey going on roads and showing military where the actual power comes from..People their choice not the muscle force..Recommend

  • Khilari
    Jul 16, 2016 - 5:09AM

    So proud of Turkish people who valiantly defended their rights. Salute to such courageous nation.Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jul 16, 2016 - 5:21AM

    God willingly coup has failed and dark forces are returning to their hideouts. Salute to brave people of Turkey who did not support undemocratic action of military. Hope dark forces in Pakistan will also learn and would never attempt such stupid move. Recommend

  • Turki
    Jul 16, 2016 - 5:44AM

    This is one coup that had to happen. Erdogan was turning Turkey into Syria. He is the worst leader in the world today. Good riddance !!Recommend

  • Raw is War
    Jul 16, 2016 - 5:45AM

    “The Turkey” is getting dressed up.Recommend

  • Adnan
    Jul 16, 2016 - 5:46AM

    Muslims cannot live under a democracy. Only autocratic, violent leaders like Gadhafi and Saddam can rule them.Recommend

  • rk singh
    Jul 16, 2016 - 5:48AM

    sad days for Pakistan’s Erdogran fans.Recommend

  • Anon
    Jul 16, 2016 - 5:58AM

    Another Islamic nation heading to its doom.Recommend

  • Khan
    Jul 16, 2016 - 6:08AM

    May Allah help Erdogan. He is good Muslim Turkish leader.

    I suspect the EU hand in this whole affairRecommend

  • Iqbal Hadi Zaidi
    Jul 16, 2016 - 6:21AM

    Shouldn’t I lament (cannot applaud in any case) that at this time when Turkey is facing coup like situation our VVIPs are just keeping silent as if nothing has happened in the country Pakistan calls a truly friendly country? At CNN, I could read the concern and statement of Obama and other leaders including Iran Foreign Minister but nothing of the sort over there or even here from us. Don’t they know the dictum, ‘Friend in need is a friend indeed’. Iqbal Hadi Zaidi / Kuwait / zaidi4merdiplomat@hotmail.comRecommend

  • Anz
    Jul 16, 2016 - 6:22AM

    Does “Move on Pakistan” party have a branch in Turkey? Appears like their appeal worked. :)))Recommend

  • Adnan
    Jul 16, 2016 - 6:42AM

    Turkey needs to be saved from Erodogan and his family of looters. Go Turkish military !!Recommend

  • Fouad Maroof
    Jul 16, 2016 - 7:05AM

    But banners were placed in Pakistan..!! for RSRecommend

  • FAZ
    Jul 16, 2016 - 7:07AM

    @M. Emad:
    Lol on your concept of military installing democracy..Recommend

  • Est23@75sterho.com
    Jul 16, 2016 - 7:37AM

    Can the Caliph deliver pure, unadulterated products to the Turkish populace? Erdogan knows this answer is no. The filth that has instituted itself into his rule is too pervasive to inspire trust among thepeople. Without this trust, Erdogan is finished.Recommend

  • Patel
    Jul 16, 2016 - 8:28AM

    The man who backed ISRecommend

  • Patel
    Jul 16, 2016 - 8:36AM

    What country next?
    Put a on on the map – any Islamic countryRecommend

  • Kickass
    Jul 16, 2016 - 8:42AM

    @Brainy Bhaijan:
    You have no brains and need a kick in your behind. Sick.Recommend

  • Mohammed
    Jul 16, 2016 - 8:52AM

    what about Pakistan defense deals of f 16 and attack helicopters with turkey….are they be affected in any way..??Recommend

  • vinsin
    Jul 16, 2016 - 9:06AM

    Pakistan should condemn Turkish army for atrocities and genocide and blind killing of innocent Turkish people, the response should be as large as for Kashmiri Muslims in Kashmir Valley. Pakistan should help Kurdish Muslims also.Recommend

  • Jamshaid khan
    Jul 16, 2016 - 10:01AM

    Many many congratulations to people of great Turkey for saving their democratic govt. They made history once again as they are already historians. Congratulations to Erdogan and his nationRecommend

  • Xman
    Jul 16, 2016 - 10:29AM

    In hindsight, we must salute Pakistani people for not letting their country crumble apart like these other Muslim fiefdoms, despite the wishes of evil nexus against us. We had chaos next door for over a decade, thousands of Pakistanis were killed in terror that ensued, the western masters put all sorts labels, their private agents roamed visa free in the country, a dictator played to their tunes, and there was an onslaught of “do more” slogans. But no matter how hard they tried, they were not able to disintegrate Pakistan. Instead the country emerged with demoratic and religiously temperate governments. Now you see their senators angry, because they do not have a hotline to presidency. Other countries should perhaps learn a thing or two about our people’s resilience in face of adversity.Recommend

  • Raj - USA
    Jul 16, 2016 - 10:30AM

    I would like to see Erdogan go, but not through a military coup. Recommend

  • Foxtrot
    Jul 16, 2016 - 10:36AM

    “The victory of the Turkish people over Liberal-Fascists and Ataturk’s brainchildren”..Recommend

  • Faizan
    Jul 16, 2016 - 10:41AM

    Well there is no need for Martial law as Erogan is himself a dictator. I don’t know what is wrong with Muslim political leaders, as soon as they come in power they try to make efforts for an extended stay rather than solving people’s problems. Not a single Muslim country can be called a progressive, stable and democratic state.Recommend

  • sabi
    Jul 16, 2016 - 11:16AM

    @Uza Syed:
    Some stupid generals in turkey misread media hate campaign against Erdogan as the voice of general public hence made a great blunder isn’t it?. Same is the story here in Pakistan where gullible like you take every word of haters ( ex servicemen and media for example) as universal fact.
    My dear ,a lot has been changed in Pakistan so let us move forward. Recommend

  • Zaida Parvez
    Jul 16, 2016 - 11:47AM

    Erdogan sticks to Turkey like a bad odour. It is hard to get rid of him. Hope the army mounts a serious counter-attack to seize control. An Egypt-style setup is what Turkey needs before this power-crazy dictator ruins it.Recommend

  • Zulfiqar Jafri
    Jul 16, 2016 - 11:49AM

    Shame to USA
    Turkey great country and great nation. they gave lot of sacrifices for democracy Recommend

  • Ajay
    Jul 16, 2016 - 12:21PM

    India has a strong army but a strong democracy as well. And to top it all we have a multi cultural, multi religious diverse society and no sectarian differences. So no coup or such medieval kind of disturbances happen here. The only problem is in Muslim majority areas of the State of J&K, but it will be dealt with appropriately. Jai Hind.Recommend

  • Last Man Alive
    Jul 16, 2016 - 12:44PM

    Turkish democracy has brought progress and prosperity to Turkish people so they support this democracy.

    Pakistani corruption democracy has brought poverty and misery to Pakistani people so they curse this “democracy”.Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jul 16, 2016 - 2:52PM

    Congratulations to great Turkish people.Recommend

  • questioneer
    Jul 16, 2016 - 4:16PM

    Will pakistan now hold solidarity with 200+ killed in the coup attempt. Will pakistan observe a solidarity day.Recommend

  • nadeem
    Jul 16, 2016 - 4:41PM

    Let this be a lesson to coup plotters in Pakistan. Recommend

  • ajeet
    Jul 16, 2016 - 4:48PM

    The Military coup was the last chance to save Turkey. Now with Edrogen, Turkey banega Pakistan.Recommend

  • Anz
    Jul 16, 2016 - 6:08PM

    Will Pakistanis come to streets to support democracy against martial law? I don’t think so.Recommend

  • Insightful
    Jul 16, 2016 - 8:20PM

    Well, to tell the truth I learned from your perspective. You filled the gaps in my knowledge. Thanks.Recommend

  • observer
    Jul 16, 2016 - 11:53PM

    This proves that Islam and Democracy are antithetical.Recommend

  • Qandeel Baluch
    Jul 17, 2016 - 12:49AM

    Indians seem to be disappointed by the coup failure. Well, the life does not go by their wishes.Recommend

  • Humza
    Jul 17, 2016 - 4:17AM

    @Uza Syed: Despite the problems of Erdogen and his behaviour as a power-obsessed and money wasting leader, the people of Turkey have the common sense to understand that military coups are never the way forward. I hope Pakistanis understand the same thing and do not allow the nation to be embarassed the way the coup plotters have made a joke of Turkey.Recommend

  • wb
    Jul 17, 2016 - 5:56AM


    “no sectarian differences.”

    You must be living under some flyover then. Muslims in India are as much thirsty for the blood of others as Muslims anywhere. Only reason they’re quiet is because they’re in minority.

    Take Hindus out of equation and see how Shia and Sunni will slit each others’ throats. See how Barelvis and Deobandis will disembowel each other. See how Wahabis and Sufis will rape each other. See how everyone will erase Ahmadis.

    That’s the naature of Islam. And it’s no different in India.Recommend

  • M.S.
    Jul 17, 2016 - 6:39AM

    This is just a beginning. The way soldiers are dragged, stripped, beaten and insulted would never be tolerated. Turkish army is proudest army of all Islamic world. It has more victories, sacrifices and conquers than all other armies combined. Turkish civilian thugs with IS terrorists have crossed the line.Recommend

  • Erik
    Jul 17, 2016 - 2:57PM

    The whole thing was staged by Erdogan, so he could suppress the opposition and consolidate his dictatorial powers.Recommend

  • FAZ
    Jul 17, 2016 - 3:38PM

    You seem to me a 10 year old blooger across my border!. If you are comparing Nawaz with Erdogan. Under Erdogan’s 13 year rule Turkish economy has grown so much that he has earned people’s confidence. It is very similar to Indian choosing Modi forgetting that he is an alleged mass murderer. He who delivers will come to power. Be it Trump, Modi or Hitler. Dark side of democracy aye?Recommend

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