Latest example of Turkey’s deteriorating stability
Gulen, a reclusive figure who leads a popular movement called Hizmet, said anyone could have masterminded the coup attempt: nationalists, the opposition. He denied any involvement.
“It could be anything,” Gulen told journalists through a translator.
“I have been away from Turkey for 16 years,” he said.
Whoever was responsible, the uprising is the latest worrying example of deteriorating stability in a country once promoted to the wider Muslim world as a model of democratic governance and economic prosperity.
Some 14 years after Erdogan’s political party swept to power in elections, Turkey teeters on the brink.
At the heart of Erdogan’s rivalry with Gulen is a fundamental division in Turkish society between secularists — some within the country’s top military brass — and Islamists, including the president’s AKP party.
Thousands of military officers have been arrested, including the commander of Turkey’s 2nd Army, Gen. Adem Huduti.
On Saturday, the Pentagon said U.S. officials were working with Turkey to resume air operations at Incirlik Air Base.
“In the meantime, U.S. Central Command is adjusting flight operations in the counter-ISIL campaign to minimize any effects on the campaign,” Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said.