Turkey dismisses over 7000 on eve of failed coup anniversary

A year after failed coup in Turkey Erdogan says'behead traitors

A year after failed coup in Turkey Erdogan says'behead traitors

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday spoke before tens of thousands of people at an iconic Istanbul bridge, calling the botched overthrow of the government a "treacherous attempt".

"First of all we will chop off the heads of those traitors", Erdogan told a rally in Istanbul, prompting cries from the crowds that capital punishment should be restored in Turkey.

The sea of Erdogan supporters packing the streets waved flags and cheered on their popular and outspoken leader.

The scale of Saturday's nationwide commemorations is aimed at etching July 15, 2016 into the minds of Turks as a key date in the history of the modern state founded in 1923 out of the ruins of the Ottoman Empire. Then it was followed by a Quranic recitation, Turkey's state-run Anadolu Agency said.

Mentioning about his visit to Ankara in the aftermath of the coup attempt he said: "I still remember the shock I felt seeing the damage inflicted at the parliament building by the bombardments of the coup plotters". "If it comes to me after parliament, I will sign it", he said.

Speaking in Istanbul, Erdogan warned of groups that are using terrorists as "manipulation". Turkey's top cleric recited a prayer for the victims.

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The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has underlined support for Turkey on the first anniversary of a defeated coup attempt.

Turkey blames USA -based cleric Fethullah Gulen for orchestrating the coup and infiltrating state institutions. PKK is not just PKK.

"Instead of expressing solidarity with my countrymen, a number of western governments and institutions opted to wait and see how the crisis would play out", Erdoğan said.

Officials are holding a series of events to honor some 250 people who were killed on July 15, 2016, while trying to stop the insurrection.

Bombs struck the parliament building in the capital Ankara, and a helicopter stolen by rogue pilots was shot down by an F-16 jet.

Erdogan was hundreds of miles away at a seaside resort when the coup got going. Some 250 people were killed and more than 2,000 were injured.

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The coup bid also frayed ties between the United States and European Union with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member Turkey, which accused its allies of failing to show solidarity.

The country has remained in a state of emergency while allowing Erdogan to tighten his grip on power and oversee a massive purge of those who he says rose up against him.

But the purge, as well as a wave of 50,000 arrests alongside it, have galvanised opposition.

The clampdown stoked widespread unease in the country.

Kemal Kilicdaroglu, leader of the opposition Republican People's Party, recently led a long trek through Turkey, about 250 miles over three-and-a-half weeks, to demand that the government loosen its stranglehold on the country's democracy. After a special session of parliament starting at 1000 GMT, most of the celebrations will be taking place deep into the night. "Over the past year, the judicial proceedings... moved outside the framework of the law", Kilicdaroglu, whose party will boycott commemoration ceremonies later in the day, told parliament.

The events on the night of the abortive coup left hundreds of people dead, including civilians who took to the streets to confront the putschists.

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