At least 6,000 people have been arrested in connection with the failed attempt to bring down Turkey’s government.

The chief military assistant to the president, senior military commanders, rank-and-file soldiers and thousands of judges are among those rounded up in a sweeping crackdown.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to ‘clean all state institutions of the virus’ of supporters of Fethullah Gulen, whose Hizmet movement has been blamed for the coup attempt.

‘They may have tanks but we have our faith. We will not leave the squares,’ he said at a funeral for some of those killed in the coup.

‘I said this yesterday, the people’s demand for democracy cannot be swept aside. This is your right.’

Mourners chanted ‘Fethullah will come and pay’ and ‘we want the death penalty’ as he spoke.

A few groups of plotters are still holding out against in Istanbul, according to a senior official speaking to Reuters. However, he said that the government was back in control of the country and the remaining leaders of the coup were expected to be arrested shortly.

Turkey’s deputy chief of mission in the UK, Cem Isik, refused to rule out the death penalty being brought back for the plotters in an interview on Sky’s Murnaghan programme.

‘This is treason, this treachery. There will be investigations into how this happened and who did it,’ he said.

‘Everything right now points to the fact that a military group from various ranks … loyal to the terrorists group of Fetullah Gulen.

‘They will be tried and they will receive their punishment.’

Pressed on whether those responsible would be executed, he said: ‘The people are furious, they have had tanks pointed at them, they have had warplanes pointed at them, they have had helicopters pointed at them. Police officers, civilians, they were all killed. Emotions are running high and they have made those calls.

‘Now it is up to any Parliament which represents the people, and of course the Turkish parliament is no different, to listen to those calls.’

At least 161 civilians and troops loyal to the government were killed as a small group declared martial law and a curfew, occupying key sites and blocking bridges across the Bosphorus.

Another 100 coup plotters died as the attempt to topple President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was crushed, according to the government.

Mr Erdogan has asked the United States to extradite Mr Gulen, who lives in exile in Pennsylvania.

He has denied any involvement and said he condemns the attempted coup ‘in the strongest terms’.

The US has said it will look at any evidence Turkey has to offer against him and and judge accordingly.

Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said: ‘The United States would weaken itself by protecting him, it would harm its reputation.

I don’t think that at this hour, the United States would protect someone who carried out this act against Turkey.’

The White House has urged Turkey to ‘act within the rule of law’ and France has told Mr Erdogan that the attempted coup does not give him a ‘blank cheque’ to act.

Thousands of supporters gathered in Taksim Square in Istanbul singing songs and waving flags overnight, with similar scenes in the capital Ankara and other cities.

‘We are here for democracy, so the country lasts,’ retired soldier Nusret Tuzak said at the Ankara gathering.

https://i2.wp.com/www.people24x7.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/ty77.jpg?fit=536%2C302https://i2.wp.com/www.people24x7.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/ty77.jpg?resize=150%2C150Staff ReporterFEATURED POSTSfeatured
At least 6,000 people have been arrested in connection with the failed attempt to bring down Turkey's government. The chief military assistant to the president, senior military commanders, rank-and-file soldiers and thousands of judges are among those rounded up in a sweeping crackdown. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to 'clean...