Denouncing the military coup as an "act of treason", Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a live speech that the army must be cleansed. Soon after reports emerged of a military coup in the country, the president flew to Istanbul where he was greeted with loud cheers from his supporters.
The ongoing clashes between the army and pro-government fighters since Friday (15 July) night have resulted in about 60 deaths so far, while more than 300 people were arrested, officials were quoted as saying to the media.
Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, who has ordered the pro-government military to shoot down aircraft being used by the rebels, has said that the situation was largely under control. One unit of about 60 soldiers, who had seized control on one of the Bosphorus bridges in Istanbul, have surrendered and their surrendering was shown live on TV on Saturday morning (16 July). Other reports are also pouring in about more rebel soldiers surrendering to pro-Erdogan police forces. The government has already termed the coup a "failed attempt." While the whereabouts of the military Chief-of-Staff remains unknown, the prime minister has announced General Umit Dundar as the new acting chief of military staff.
The state-run Anadolu news agency quoted Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag as saying that security forces have defeated the coup plotters in several places, including police and government buildings. "God willing, they will be defeated in the remaining areas and those in the air will be brought down," he added. The new agency has also reported that 754 members of Turkey's armed forces have been detained across the country.
Meanwhile, the sudden turn of events in Turkey that followed the Thursday (14 July) terror attack in Nice, France that left 84 people dead and scores injured has left the world in shock. World leaders from different countries have expressed support to the Turkish administration.
US President Barack Obama has urged the people of Turkey to support the democratically elected government in the country. He has also discussed the events with Secretary of State John Kerry and the two have urged the rebelling party to avoid bloodshed and respect democracy.
Nato Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg is said to have spoken to Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and called for respect for democracy.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a tweet, "The democratic order in Turkey must be respected. Everything needs to be done to protect human lives."
UK Foreign Minister Boris Johnson has tweeted that its embassy is monitoring the situation closely in Turkey.
Greek government officials were quoted by ekathimerini.com that leaders in the country are holding emergency meetings in Athens to monitor developments in neighbouring Turkey. The officials reportedly said their forces have been put on a state of "heightened readiness" and not merely on alert amid the ongoing conflict in Turkey.
Indian foreign minister Sushma Swaraj said in a tweet that the country is closely monitoring the developments in Turkey. She urged all the Turks to support democracy.