Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim is calling military actions in multiple cities an attempted coup against the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
He told television channel NTV, “Some people illegally undertook an illegal action outside of the chain of command.”
“The government elected by the people remains in charge. This government will only go when the people say so,” he said.
A Turkish state television broadcaster read a statement saying the military has taken over control of the country and that he was reading it on orders from the military.
The state news agency says the chief of staff of the Turkish armed forces was taken hostage.
Reports on social media and in local press described tanks in the streets and military planes and helicopters overhead in Ankara. According to the wire service, NTV showed images of tanks at Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport, the scene of a terror attack that killed at least 42 people in June, and a pilot at the airport said all outbound flights had been canceled.
Dogan News reported that military vehicles blocked two major bridges over the Bosphorus Strait in Istanbul.