Erdogen warns to cut off heads of traitors

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned that Turkey would cut off the heads of traitors.

He was addressing a function to mark the first anniversary of failed coup in Istanbul. In the speech, Erdogan reiterated his support for reinstating the death penalty.

Erdogan said that the people who are trialed for attempting a coup should be given a standard uniform “like in Guantanamo” and warned that Turkey would “cut the heads off” people who tried to disturb the balance of the country.

“The most powerful weapons were mercilessly used by the enemies of our nation,” he said. “Our people only had the flag and faith.”

The problem in Turkey has become even more complicated. It involves dissidents and even opposition politicians.

Tens of thousands of people have been dismissed or detained from the civil service, police, military, judiciary, media and academia, and rights activists have been repeatedly detained. The government has sacked an additional 7,000 people, and more than 150 journalists are in prison.

A number of commemorative events took place around Istanbul, Ankara and other big cities to mark the anniversary of the coup.

The authorities have declared July 15 an annual national holiday of “democracy and unity”, billing the foiling of the putsch as a historic victory of Turkish democracy.

Two hundred and forty nine people, not including the plotters, were killed when a disgruntled faction in the army sent tanks into the streets and war planes into the sky in a violent bid to overthrow Erdogan after one-and-a-half decades in power. But they were thwarted within hours as the authorities regrouped and people poured into the streets in support of Erdogan, who blamed followers of his ally turned nemesis, the US-based preacher Fethullah Gulen.

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