>> Turkey's President wants the army brought under his control. Tayyip Erdogan promoting 99 colonels and ditching 48 generals on Thursday, in what seems like a never-ending purge. But the top brass managing to hold on following a five-hour meeting of the Supreme Military Council. Reuters Bureau Chief in Istanbul, Nick Tattersall.
Erdogan has made no secret of his ambition to bring an executive presidency to Turkey, a Turkish version of the system in the United States or France. And his critics see this as another step in that plan. Turkish authorities, on the other hand, dismiss that and say that these purges, wide-spread as they may be, are entirely justified.
Pointing out that many of the 246 people killed in the attempted coup were civilians. And that the extent and the shock of it should not be underestimated.>> The president, who narrowly escaped capture and possible death following a failed coup attempt July the 15th, has told Reuters the Army needs fresh blood.
1,700 military personnel discharged over their alleged roles in the abortive Putsch. That's about 40% of Turkey's serving admirals and generals.>> What we've heard from a US General and from the director of the National Intelligence Agency that they're concerned about these purges. That some of the officers the United States has been working with in Turkey, are now in jail, accused of involvement or masterminding this plot.
That risks damaging and compromising the US-led fight against Islamic State.>> Even before the failed coup, Turkey was struggling with major security challenges, facing attacks from both Kurdish militants and Islamic State. That grim reality highlighted yet further June's tourism data, showing a 40% drop in foreign visitors.