Turkey’s Chief of Staff was rescued after being held hostage during coup attempt, updates

Hulusi Akar , Turkey's army chief
Hulusi Akar , Turkey’s army chief

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 and dozens of rebel soldiers abandoned their tanks in the main city of Istanbul.

At least 60 people were killed in violence that erupted on Friday after a faction of the armed forces attempted to seize power, officials said.

A successful overthrow of Erdogan, who has ruled Turkey since 2003, would have marked one of the biggest shifts in the Middle East in years, transforming one of the most important U.S. allies while war rages on its border. A failed coup attempt could still destabilise a pivotal country.

Mr. 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 latest: 

  • Turkish intelligence chief Hakan Fidan was at secure location, in constant contact with President and PM through coup attempt, Reuters reports quoting a source
  • Military helicopters attack Turkish intelligence agency HQ, reports Reuters.
  • The chief of staff  of Turkey’s armed forces has been rescued after being held hostage during an attempted coup by a military faction which used tanks and attack helicopters to try to seize power overnight, Reuters reports quoting a senior Turkish official said. Hulusi Akar was held by rebel soldiers during the attempted coup, the agency says quoting Turkish broadcasters. Awar was reportedly  transported by helicopter to the Akıncılar Air Base, which is located some 35 kilometers northwest of Ankara.
  • Turkey’s police chief says 16 coup plotters have been killed in clashes at Turkey’s paramilitary headquarters; 250 detained.
  • Fethullah Gulen, the US-based cleric and former ally of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, denies being behind the attempted coup in Turkey and condemned it “in the strongest terms”

Mr. Erdogan has accused the reclusive Islamic preacher, who lives in a tiny town in the Pocono Mountains of the U.S. State of Pennsylvania, of being behind the coup.

  •  Turkish official says 29 Colonels and 5 Generals removed from posts in military after coup attempt.
  •  Turkey’s state-run Anadolu Agency reports 754 members of armed forces have been detained across the country.
  • At least 60 people killed and 336 detained in the night of violence across Turkey. The majority of those killed are civilians and most of those detained are soldiers, a official says.
  • Turkey appoints new acting army chief of staff after coup bid: PM. 
  • Dozens of soldiers backing the coup against the government surrendered on the Bosphorus bridge in Istanbul that they had held throughout the night, television pictures shows.
  • Turkish F-16s launch air strikes against tanks outside palace, says presidential source.




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