■ It’s a warning to dictatorial leaders – Obiozor
THE military in Turkey on Friday deployed troops and tanks to the streets of Istanbul and capital city, Ankara, claiming a takeover of government even as armed soldiers stormed government buildings and jets roared over the country’s airspace as Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said a group within the military had attempted to overthrow the government.
A national curfew was announced, and other security forces had been called in to “do what is necessary,” Yildirim said. “Some people illegally undertook an illegal action outside of the chain of command,” Yildirim said in comments broadcast by private channel NTV and reported by Reuters.
“The government elected by the people remains in charge. This government will only go when the people say so.”
Istanbul’s Bosphorus bridge and Fatih Sultan Mehmet bridge were both closed by military forces on Friday, local television channels reported, without giving a reason. Istanbul is 320 miles away from Ankara.
The Turkish military, however, claimed in a statement that it had taken over the country in order for democratic order and human rights to remain. In the statement, the military said that all existing foreign relations would continue and that rule of law would be a priority.
A Turkish presidential source said in a statement, according to Reuters, that the statement made on behalf of the armed forces was not authorized by military command.
Footage from NTV showed tanks at the entrance to Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport, and all flights from the airport were reportedly cancelled. Many social media platforms were blocked in Turkey during Friday’s events, according to internet monitoring groups.
Reacting to the coup in Turkey, former Nigerian Ambassador to the United State, Prof George Obiozor, advised that leaders must be careful on how to use power, be it in Africa, Europe etc.
According to him, power is delicate, and one must make sure that he doesn’t abuse it. If there is any abuse of power, challenge to such power must come.
The diplomat noted that Turkey is one of the most dynamic countries in the world. They taught the world the history of modernization. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, a military man built the modern Turkey. He gave turkey the best democracy and modernisation. He was a military man who built a modern nation.