Military coups now prepared in squares and on social media, like in Egypt: Turkish PM
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan speaks during a fast-breaking event of the Independent Industrialists' and Businessmen's Association (MÜSİAD) in Istanbul, July 11. AA photoThe groundwork of military coups is laid by demonstrations and through social media, as is the case in Egypt, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said, in remarks apparently also referring to the Gezi Park protests in Turkey that have been ongoing continued since late May.
"In the past, military coups took place after the army went into the streets, declared martial law and occupied the radio and the television networks. Now the foundations are laid with illegal demonstrations, squares and social media, and the armed forces come right after that," Erdoğan said during a fast-breaking event of the Independent Industrialists' and Businessmen's Association (MÜSİAD) in Istanbul July 11.
"There is one point that all these plots and scenarios do not take into account. The same way they have plots, God also has a plot. The people also have a plot," he added.
He also linked such moves to "sabotage attempts" against the Kurdish peace process started six months ago, which entered a critical phase in May with the start of the withdrawal of outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) militants from Turkish soil.
"A strong Turkey is not wanted in the region," Erdoğan said.
The prime minister recalled the military coup of Feb. 28, 1997, in Turkey which led to the banning of the Welfare Party (RP). "Just as in the past, they may confront us by terrorizing the squares," he said.
Erdoğan also once again targeted the Gezi Park protesters, saying that the Kazlıçeşme Square where the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) organized a mass counter-rally on June 16 was "much bigger than Taksim Square." "But there is an even bigger square, the ballot box," he said.
The prime minister had accused Gezi protesters of being used by conspirators against the AKP government. He also repeatedly defended the harsh police crackdowns, defying demands from the protesters’ representatives to hold those responsible for the disproportionate use of violence accountable.