Decree by Turkey’s Erdogan brings military more under govt

ISTANBUL — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan issued a new presidential decree Sunday that introduced sweeping changes to Turkey’s military in the wake of a July 15 failed coup, bringing the armed forces further under civilian authority.

The decree, the third issued under a three-month state of emergency declared after the attempted coup, gives the president and prime minister the authority to issue direct orders to the commanders of the army, air force and navy.

It also announces the discharge of 1,389 military personnel, including Erdogan’s chief military adviser, who had been arrested days after the attempted coup, the Chief of General Staff’s charge d’affaires and the defense minister’s chief secretary.

The presidential decree puts the military commands directly under the defense ministry, puts all military hospitals under the authority of the health ministry, and also expands the Supreme Military Council — the body that makes decisions on military affairs and appointments — to include Turkey’s deputy prime ministers and its justice, foreign and interior ministers.

The document, published in the official gazette Sunday, also shuts down all military schools, academies and non-commissioned officer training institutes and establishes a new national defense university to train officers.

On Sunday afternoon, thousands held an anti-coup rally in the German city of Cologne, waving Turkish flags and holding banners with Erdogan’s picture.

In the wake of the attempted coup,

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