World leaders react to attempted military coup in Turkey

World leaders react to attempted military coup in Turkey
World leaders urge restraint in Turkey as an attempted military coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan took off on Friday.
2 min read
16 July, 2016
John Kerry commented on the unfolding events in Turkey during a press conference [NurPhoto]

US President Barack Obama called for restraint after factions from the Turkish military announced a coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government on Friday night and clashes between rival army and police units broke out across the country. 

Obama urged all parties in the country to "support the democratically-elected government of Turkey, show restraint, and avoid any violence or bloodshed", the White House said on Saturday.

The US Secretary of State John Kerry had commented earlier on the unfolding events in Turkey during a joint press conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Moscow.

"We've heard reports that others have heard. I don't have any details at this point in time," Kerry said, "I hope there will be stability and peace and continuity within Turkey, but I have nothing to add on what has transpired at this moment."

Russia's Foreign Minister called on Turkey to avoid all "bloodshed" as troops were on the streets of the country's major cities.

"Problems in Turkey need to be resolved in accordance with the constitution," Lavrov said.

Meanwhile, European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini urged "restraint" in Turkey.

"In constant contact with EU Delegation in Ankara & Brussels from Mongolia. Call for restraint and respect for democratic institutions #Turkey," she tweeted from a regional summit in Ulan Bator.

Brussels will be watching with deep concern the events in Turkey, a key partner on its southeastern flank which has been trying to join the EU for many years without success.

The EU's controversial deal with Turkey in March to tackle the migrant crisis could be at risk, with implications for French and German elections next year.

Germany said democratic institutions in Turkey "must be respected" spokesman for Chancellor Angela Merkel said Saturday.

"The democratic order must be respected," Steffen Seibert tweeted. "Everything must be done to protect human lives," he added.

Britain's Foreign Minister Boris Johnson voiced his concern.

"Very concerned by events unfolding in #Turkey. Our Embassy is monitoring the situation closely," he tweeted.

Iran's foreign minister Javad Zarif also took to Twitter to comment on the unfolding events in Turkey.

"Deeply concerned about the crisis in Turkey. Stability, democracy and safety of Turkish people are paramount. Unity and prudence are imperative," Zarif tweeted.

The Gulf state of Qatar denounced the military coup attempt, according to state news agency QNA.

Turkey seems likely to now dominate an EU foreign ministers' meeting on Monday which will also be attended by US Secretary of State John Kerry.

Agencies contributed to this report.