Crowd marches in central Turkey after claiming power blackout was coup attempt
KONYA – Doğan News Agency
AA photoA crowd in the Central Anatolian province of Konya has taken to the streets with Turkish flags in a move similar to the one seen across the country on the night of the July 15 failed coup attempt, after they interpreted a power blackout in the city center as the start of another attempted takeover.
Organizing via social media, a group of 500 people gathered in central Konya and marched to the governor’s office building and the local military buildings in an attempt to prevent what they thought was another coup attempt, as they experienced a 30-minute power blackout on Aug. 30 at around 1:20 a.m.
Konya Governor Yakup Canpolat tweeted and police officers gave verbal assurances that the blackout had been caused by a technical problem and a coup attempt was not underway in an attempt to calm the restive crowd. While some 300 from the crowd cut their efforts short, some 200 continued their improvised watch against any coup attempt and demanded to see Canpolat.
Meanwhile another group blocked the gates of a Turkish Land Forces commandership building with their vehicles while police argued with a small group that wanted to enter the governor’s office.
The crowd’s watch continued until ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Konya deputy Mehmet Babaoğlu arrived at the governor’s office building and reassuring that the blackout was caused by a “technical problem” which had been fixed and that he was in contact with the governor. Babaoğlu later took two people from the crowd inside the governor’s office and had them talk on the phone with the governor.
Following the statements of the two in line with the governor’s assurances, the crowd started to leave their watch. Some 20 to 30 people waiting in front of military buildings also dispersed later in the night.