Turkey coup: Citizens defy martial law curfew to take to the streets

The military has instigated a coup against President Erdogan

Will Worley
Saturday 16 July 2016 09:07 BST
Turkey: Erdogan loyalists celebrate on tanks after retaking the Bosphorus Bridge

Beleaguered President Erdogan has called for citizens to take to the streets in response to a coup attempt.

Thousands seople have been heading to iconic areas of Istanbul and other areas in defiance of a military imposed curfew.

The army - which is on the streets in armoured vehicles and full battle dress - has declared martial law and soldiers have urged people to go home.

Turkey's president has urged citizens to take to the streets in a show of support for the government after the military said it seized full control of the country.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, speaking to CNN-Turk through FaceTime, called the actions by the military "an attempt at an uprising by a minority within our armed forces."

In addition to Erdogan’s call, Interior Minister Efkan Ala urged people to “go out in city center in every city.”

A large group of people have gathered in Istanbul’s Taksim Square, waving the national flag.

Supporters of Recep Tayyip Erdogan protest in front of soldiers in Istanbul's Taksim square

Some appeared on top of tanks and apparently challenged the soldiers.

Reports have indicated they are protesting the coup but this has not been independently verified by The Independent.

Similar rallies are apparently taking place in Ankara and other cities.

The situation has become very unstable amd tanks have allegedly opened fire around the parliament building.

Loud explosions have been heard and witnesses witnesses claimed to see a military helicopter firing bullets over the capital, Anakara. Television images of the Bosphorus Bridge in Istanbul showed people as crouching as gunfire can be heard. Tracer bullets were reportedly fired on the Asian side of the structure. There were also reports of shooting at Aturtuk airport, also in Istanbul.

Turkey's minister for EU Affairs, Omer Celik, called on soldiers to disobey orders after the military announced on Friday that it was seizing control of the government in a coup.

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