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 Consequences of attempted coup in Turkey may affect anti-ISIS campaign, - The New York Times

The consequences of a failed coup in Turkey may affect its cooperation with the West regarding Syria and other anti-ISIS issues, such as joint measures to reduce the flow of refugees to Europe.

Censor.NET reports citing The New York Times editorial.

As noted, it was ironic that, as members of the military launched a coup against him on Friday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey resorted to guerrilla media tactics - broadcasting via the FaceTime app on his cellphone - to urge Turks to oppose the plotters. Mr. Erdogan has been no friend to free expression, ruthlessly asserting control over the news media and restricting human rights and free speech. Yet thousands responded to his appeal, turning back the rebels and demonstrating that they still value democracy, even if Mr. Erdogan has eroded its meaning.

This erosion, according to the article, is now accelerating, exacting a terrible price from Turkey's citizens and posing new challenges to international efforts to confront the Islamic State.

After the chaotic and bloody events of the weekend, Mr. Erdogan is becoming more vengeful and obsessed with control than ever, exploiting the crisis not just to punish mutinous soldiers but to further quash whatever dissent is left in Turkey.

"They will pay a heavy price for this. This uprising is a gift from God to us because this will be a reason to cleanse our army," the Turkish president said chillingly.

Read more: Some 6,000 people detained across Turkey over attempted coup, - justice minister

Since coming to power as prime minister in 2003, Mr. Erdogan has become an increasingly authoritarian leader who has steered his country far from the vision of a model Muslim democracy that many had longed for. The volatile Middle East cannot afford to have another state unravel, especially one that is also a bulwark of NATO's eastern flank.

Over the weekend, the United States emphasized its "absolute support for Turkey's democratically elected, civilian government and democratic institutions" but also urged restraint and a commitment to due process. However, as noted, in a strategic sense, the fallout from the mutiny is already being felt. Turkey on Saturday halted American-led strike missions against the Islamic State that have been flying from Incirlik air base, but resumed them a day later.

Given the apparent split over Mr. Erdogan within the Turkish military, ties between the American military and Turkish military, a critical link in the Turkey-American relationship, will be trickier to manage. That could impede cooperation on Syria and other matters besides the Islamic State, including efforts to halt the flow of refugees into Europe.

The publication also notes that Mr. Erdogan moved rapidly to round up his adversaries, real or imagined. Authorities had detained nearly 3,000 members of the armed forces and purged 2,745 judges. After the insurrection, Mr. Erdogan blamed the followers of Fethullah Gulen, a Muslim cleric in exile in Pennsylvania, who was his ally until a bitter falling-out three years ago. As the response to the coup shows, Mr. Erdogan retains significant support in his country, even as he has become increasingly polarizing. One can hope that this desperate uprising will prompt him to reach out to his opponents, but Mr. Erdogan's pattern points in the opposite direction. A more likely scenario is that the upheaval and lingering tensions will compromise Turkey's democracy and its ability to be a stabilizing influence in NATO and the region.

Read more: 2,839 military suspected of coup plotting detained throughout Turkey, PM Binali Yildirim says

Earlier, the Turkish army tried to seize control of the country to "defend democracy and the rights of citizens." Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised to find and destroy those responsible for the "occupation."

Later on, nearly 6,000 people were detained as suspected insurgents, including some 2,800 military. Erdogan's closest military adviser and the commander of Incirlik Air Base which hosts the U.S. Air Force aircraft were among the detainees. The arrest of more than 2,700 judges was also sanctioned. 426 judges and prosecutors were apprehended.

Read more: Armed people attacked district police station in Yerevan, took hostages. PHOTOS
Источник: https://en.censor.net.ua/n398137
 
 
 
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