Embattled Turkish president Tayyip Erdogan addresses the nation through a Facetime video connection as a coup threatens to topple the government. Diane Hodges reports.
Turkey’s president urges people to head to streets to protest coup
(OPENS WITH PICS OF TANKS)
Turkey’s military said on Friday it had seized power but President Tayyip Erdogan vowed that the attempted coup would be put down.
(NAT OF ERDOGAN)
“We will overcome this,” Erdogan said, speaking on a video call to a mobile phone held up to the camera by an announcer on the Turkish sister station of CNN.
He called on his followers to take to the streets to defend his government and said the coup plotters would pay a heavy price.
An official said Erdogan was speaking from Marmaris on the Turkish coast but Erdogan vowed to swiftly return to the capital, Ankara.
Warplanes and helicopters roared over the city and an explosion was heard.
Airports are closed and access to social media sites was cut off.
A senior Turkish government official said on Friday that a Turkish military faction attempting a coup has control of some tanks and has ordered its forces to try to take over the streets but has been unable do so in many areas.
If successful, the overthrow of Erdogan, who has ruled Turkey since 2003, would be one of the biggest shifts in the Middle East in years, transforming one of the most important U.S. allies in the region while war rages on its border.