Turkey to restructure its army after coup attempt: Erdogan

Updated: 2016-07-22 09:56


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Turkey to restructure its army after coup attempt: Erdogan

Turkish policemen attend the funeral ceremony of special forces police officer Meric Alemdar killed during the failed July 15 coup, at the Kocatepe mosque in Ankara on July 21, 2016. [Photo/Xinhua]

ANKARA -- Turkish military will be restructured in a short time following a failed coup attempt, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday.

"The army will get fresh blood," Erdogan said in a televised interview in Ankara.

The president underlined significant deficiencies and failure in their intelligence gathering about the July 15 coup attempt.

"No need to hide or deny. I told it to the undersecretary of national intelligence organization (Hakan Fidan)," he said.

President Erdogan said he was not able to reach the chief of intelligence agency and the general staff at the night of July 15. "I hardly had contact with the prime minister," he said.

The army should take a serious lesson from this incident, he noted.

"A new coup attempt is possible but not easy. We are more vigilant now," the president said.

Some 10,400 people were detained, 4,060 of them were arrested, according to figures given by the president. About 100 of the arrested were generals, he said.

Erdogan said they will extend the state of emergency for three months more if needed. The government has decided to declare three months of state of emergency on Wednesday, which the parliament has approved Thursday.

The president also criticized Standard & Poor's decision to downgrade Turkey's credit rating from "BB+" to "BB" on Wednesday with a negative outlook.

It was a political decision, Erdogan said, stressing that the economy of Turkey is strong with no problem in liquidity.

The failed coup attempt, which began last Friday, was crushed the next day; at least 290 people, including more than 100 "coup plotters," were killed, authorities said.

The Turkish government claimed the failed coup was organized by followers of Fethullah Gulen, a US-based cleric.