Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has announced sweeping reforms to the military in the aftermath of the failed coup attempt. As part of the restructuring efforts, all military schools would be shutdown while the chiefs of the armed forces and intelligence would directly report to the president.
Under the new proposals, the country's military academies would be replaced by a national defence university, he said in an interview with the pro-government broadcaster A Haber on Saturday (30 July). The announcements are likely to be included in the official gazette on 31 July, following an approval from parliament.
Erdogan argued that a small constitutional package would bring in more civilian character to Turkey's democracy and would strengthen it.
Turkey has been reeling under the effects of the orchestrated attempt to overthrow the ruling regime. Besides detaining, removing, and punishing thousands of personnel from state-backed institutions, Ankara has been streamlining various establishments especially the military. As many as 1,700 military personnel, who include top generals and admirals, were dishonourably discharged earlier this week.
"Our armed forces will be much stronger with the latest decree we are preparing. Our force commanders will report to the defense minister. Military schools will be shut down... We will establish a national defense university," said the Turkish leader. He also expressed his exasperation with foreign powers for not extending their solidarity with Turkey at such a critical situation.
Meanwhile, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said the main airbase in capital Ankara and other key military installations in Istanbul would be shut down. Those bases, used by the engineers of the coup, would instead be turned into the memorials for the victims, who died in the coup attempt.
While addressing a public gathering in Ankara, he said: "That Akıncı Air Base which nested traitors will be closed and it will be turned into a place where the memories of our martyrs will be kept alive," reported Hurriyet News.