On 11 September 2016, an open letter signed by Nobel Prize-winning authors Orhan Pamuk and J.M. Coetzee along with 52 other writers, academics and publishers was published in The Guardian. The letter described Turkish journalist Nazli Ilicak and Turkish writer Asli Erdogan (no ties to Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan) as “outspoken defenders of democracy”.
The Peoples' Democratic Party's (HDP) co-chair Figen Yuksekdag penned an article for Newsweek in which she claimed that all political parties united to oppose the 15 July coup attempt in Turkey, including the HDP.
On 11 September 2016, Turkey's Interior Ministry announced that the government replaced 28 mayors with state-appointed trustees as part of its fight against both the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK)* and the Fetullahist Terror Organization (FETO)**.
On 29 August 2016, an article was published in The Wall Street Journal in which it was claimed that the ceasefire between the Turkish government and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) was broken because of Turkey’s “crackdown” on the Kurds.
The PKK is a Marxist-Leninist militant organization – listed as terrorist group by Turkey, the US, NATO and the EU – that seeks to impose its ideology on Turkey’s majority-Kurdish southeast.
On 15 July 2016, a failed coup attempt in Turkey left 241 people dead while 1,540 people were wounded. The Presidential Complex and the Grand National Assembly of Turkey were bombed.
There is strong evidence that Fethullah Gulen, a US-based cult leader who heads an organization on Turkey’s terror list dubbed the Fethullahist Terror Organization (FETO), directed the coup attempt, according to the Turkish government.