- Kevin Lamarque/Reuters
US President Barack Obama delivered a clear signal of support for the “democratically elected government of Turkey” on Friday night, amid an apparent coup attempt by factions of the Turkish military.
The White House said that Obama called US Secretary of State John Kerry late on Friday night to discuss the unfolding events in Turkey.
The White House said in a readout of the call:
“The President and Secretary agreed that all parties in Turkey should support the democratically elected government of Turkey, show restraint, and avoid any violence or bloodshed. The Secretary underscored that the State Department will continue to focus on the safety and security of US citizens in Turkey. The President asked the Secretary to continue to keep him updated as the situation unfolds.”
Kerry also issued a separate statement of support, adding that the US was viewing the situation with “gravest concern.”
Factions of the military staged an attempted coup late on Friday, plunging the NATO member state and American ally into chaos. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan urged resistance on local TV over FaceTime, leading people in Turkey to take to the streets of Istanbul.
“I spoke this evening to [Turkish] Foreign Minister [Mevlut] Cavusoglu and emphasized the United States’ absolute support for Turkey’s democratically elected, civilian government and democratic institutions,” Kerry said in his statement.
He added: “We urge all parties to ensure the safety and well-being of diplomatic missions and personnel and civilians throughout Turkey.”
For more coverage of the unfolding events, follow Business Insider reporter Natasha Bertrand’s story here.