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Turkey shudders under attempted military coup ousting President Erdogan

Sahil Bhalla | Updated on: 16 July 2016, 14:53 IST

An attempted Turkish military coup - either by the military themselves or staged by President Tayyip Erdogan - started to crumble early Saturday morning. Erdogan was accused of " undermining the country's secular traditions." Erdogan has been in power since 2003 and if the coup was successful, it would have been one of the biggest shifts in power in the Middle East in years.

The latest death toll comes from General Umit Dundar, the newly appointed acting chief. More than 190 people have been killed and here is the breakdown:

  • 41 police officers
  • Two soldiers
  • 47 civilians
  • 104 people described as 'coup plotters'
13 soldiers who attempted to storm the presidential palace in Akara have also been arrested. In total, 1,563 members of the armed forces have been arrested.

104 coup plotters have been killed according to Reuters. This is above the 90 people declared dead, says new appointed acting chief of military staff, Umit Dundar.

People in Turkey say they've began receiving SMS messages from government authorities urging them to gather in the streets once again, in support of democracy.

Guardian says that many of those protesting do not support the government but will demonstrate in support of "the democratically elected government in the face of an attempted - if apparently failed - military coup."

There were chaotic scenes when people took to the streets for the first time. Thousands protested alongside tanks.

As the dust began to settle, videos emerged of Turkish police attempting to arrest soldiers involved in the coup:

And some other videos from the attempted coup:

After leaving his hotel in the South West coast, Erdogan addressed a large crowd of supporters outside the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul. Erdogan said, "They have pointed the people's guns against the people. The president, whom 52 percent of the people brought to power, is in charge. This government brought to power by the people, is in charge."

Earlier in the day, President Erdoğan's government received backing from China and Japan.

Here's the military opening fire at the MIT headquarters:

The best of all came from Erdogan himself, when he gave a statement via FaceTime and it was broadcast live on national television.

Some though say that Turkey was blocking or 'slowing access' to social media. There are conflicting reports on this. As Guardian reported, "Turkey Blocks, an organization that monitors internet censorship in the country, tweeted on Friday evening that Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube were being blocked, but that Vimeo and Instagram were still functioning.

"Our data indicated a 2 hour period of social media throttling but no evidence of a full internet blackout in #Turkey," the group subsequently tweeted. Facebook and Twitter users confirmed the service had been inaccessible but had since returned, albeit slowly."

First published: 16 July 2016, 14:53 IST
Sahil Bhalla @IMSahilBhalla

Sahil is a correspondent at Catch. A gadget freak, he loves offering free tech support to family and friends. He studied at Sarah Lawrence College, New York and worked previously for Scroll. He selectively boycotts fast food chains, worries about Arsenal, and travels whenever and wherever he can. Sahil is an unapologetic foodie and a film aficionado.