ANKARA, TURKEY (JULY 15, 2017) (PRESIDENTIAL POOL) – Thousands of Turks gathered in front of the Turkish parliament in the capital Ankara at the anniversary of last year’s failed coup in the early hours of Sunday (July 16). Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addressed to the thousands gathered in front of the parliament.
A sea of rapturous, flag-waving crowds spilled across the streets of Istanbul, where last year unarmed civilians stood up to rogue soldiers who commandeered tanks, warplanes and helicopters in a bid to topple Erdogan.
Some 250 people were killed and parliament bombed before the coup was put down. The show of popular defiance has likely ended decades of military interference in Turkish politics.
But along with a groundswell of nationalism, the coup’s greatest legacy has been a far-reaching crackdown that has deepened the divide between Western-facing, secular Turks and the pious millions who back Erdogan’s Islamist-rooted politics.