By Henry D Gombya
A faction in the Turkish army is trying to overthrow the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan after forcing its way into an Ankara TV station and forcing a news reader to read a statement stating the army had overthrown the government.
Reports reaching us from Ankara are still sketchy but we can state that the army seems to be encountering problems in completing the coup after Mr Erdogan used his Facebook account to urge his people to come out on the streets and make it hard for the military coup to succeed. There are reports that people are now coming into their thousands into the Turkish capital Ankara where army tanks had earlier on closed off the capital’s main bridges and ordered martial law a curfew to last until early Saturday. Cable news reports are currently showing standoffs between civilians and army tanks with people throwing themselves in front of army tanks and making it hard for them to proceed.
Turkey is considered a key partner by both the United States and the European Union but its leader who has dominated the country’s politics for some time now has angered many by trying to seek more powers for what used to be simply a ceremonial post after moving from the post of Prime Minister to the presidency. As a NATO member, Turkey is seen as part of the US-led coalition against ISIS (Islamic State), the Islamic movement that has captured several parts of Iraq and Syria and carried out frenzied attacks on civilians and the armed forces in both countries.