Turkish major says he notified intelligence agency of possible coup attempt

Turkish major says he notified intelligence agency of possible coup attempt

Turkish major says he notified intelligence agency of possible coup attempt

AFP photo

A major, who came to prominence after it emerged that he met with Turkey’s National Intelligence Agency (MİT) officials hours before the July 2016 coup attempt, has said he notified the intelligence authorities of a possible takeover. 

The Air Forces major, identified only by the initials as O.K., said that when he went to the MİT headquarters on July 15, 2016, he told the authorities that a coup attempt may unfold. 

“I remember precisely saying ‘There may be a coup,’” O.K. said, according to meeting records dated Aug. 11, 2016, that also included the names of then-Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor Harun Kodalak, Deputy Chief Public Prosecutor Necip Cem İşçimen and a clerk. He added that his connection with the MİT started after that incident. 

“They called me from the MİT the next day and said ‘Let’s host you as a guest for a couple of days.’ Half an hour later a group came and took me,” he also said. 

The report did not feature the name or signature of the major due to “the necessity of keeping his identity secret.”

It previously emerged that O.K. had gone to the MİT headquarters to give information regarding unusual activities in the military before the July 15, 2016 coup attempt.

“I was in a vacation camp with my family starting from July 11, 2016 in [the northwestern district of] Akçay. My battalion commander major Deniz Aldemir called on July 13 and told me that I should be on duty on Friday [July 15]. We were at his car and he said ‘Turn off your phone.’ He turned the volume of the radio up,” O.K. said, adding that Aldemir told him that he knew O.K. was a Gülenist and MİT Chief Hakan Fidan was “to be taken with a Cooger helicopter.”

“Aldemir said, ‘I know you are from the movement. We have an activity tonight. I will take Hakan Fidan with a Cooger helicopter and you will fly with Murat Bolat. A lot of blood will be shed.’ I understood that something against the country was about to take place,” O.K. said. 

Saying he left the military barracks at around 1:55 p.m. on July 15, 2016, O.K. noted that he texted Aldemir that he could not fly.

“I arrived at the MİT with a taxi at around 2:20 p.m. I told the official at the door, ‘I’m here to give information to the MİT regarding ‘parallels’ in the Turkish army,’” O.K. said, referring to Gülenists. 

“Two people came to see me at around 3 p.m. I told them about the issue and they were worried. They asked me what could happen and I told them that something big could happen and it may even be a coup activity. They asked ‘What does it mean to take Hakan Fidan?’ I told them that it would not be well-intentioned because they said ‘a lot of blood will be shed,” he added. 

According to the meeting report, O.K. also spoke about his connection with FETÖ, saying he first met Gülenists when he stayed at a Gülen-linked dormitory while studying in a middle school in the Akşehir district of the Central Anatolian province of Konya. 

“When we graduated in 1996, they [Gülenists] took us to see Fethullah Gülen in Istanbul. We went to see him at a FEM school in Istanbul. He didn’t tell us anything. He had a guest. We sat there for about a half-an-hour,” O.K. said, adding that his code-name in FETÖ was “Tarık.” 

Saying he halted his connection to the group after the Balyoz and Ergenekon coup plot cases, widely believed to be conspiracies plotted by Gülenists, O.K. claimed that he stopped attending their meetings after 2014. 
Asked about the duties the plotters planned to give him during the attempted takeover, he said he was still unsure about this.

“I can’t understand this aspect. They didn’t call on any people who I thought were actually Gülenists. I think they didn’t call on them because they were hiding them,” he said.