Analysis 17 Aug 17

Turkish Purges Leave Once Mighty Army Weakened

Once one of the world's strongest armed forces, the Turkish military has been seriously undermined by waves of arrests and dismissals, experts warn.

Istanbul, Ankara, Sarajevo

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Photo: Beta/Pool photo via AP

The latest round of arrests and dismissals in Turkey that the government has been undertaking over the last year includes – as usual – more soldiers and officers.

“After all the arrests and suspensions, the Turkish army is in a serious crisis in terms of human capacity,” a Turkish university professor specialising in security and foreign policy told BIRN under condition of anonymity, citing security concerns.

According to the Turkish Justice Ministry’s own data, 6,976 high-ranking officers, including 166 generals ¬ 40 per cent of all the general staff ¬ plus 6,810 colonels, have been arrested since the failed coup attempt of July 15, 2016.

In addition, more than 20,000 military personnel were suspended from service for alleged links to the coup plotters.

Subscribe to Balkan Insight Premium to read the full article.

Please login to your account below if you are already a Premium Subscriber.

Buy Premium Subscription

Our Premium Service gives you full access to all content published on, including analyses, investigations, comments, interviews and more. Choose your subscription today and get unparalleled in-depth coverage of the Western Balkans.

Buy Premium Subscription

If you have trouble logging in or any other questions regarding you account, please contact us

Talk about it!

blog comments powered by Disqus

Premium Selection

20 Sep 17

Refugee Experts Downplay Romania’s Migrant ‘Crisis’

Despite reports of a new migration route opening up on the Black Sea, Romanian authorities and international organizations say scare stories have no basis in reality.

19 Sep 17

Albanians Query Wisdom of Slimmed-Down Government

Edi Rama has honoured pledges to cut bureaucracy by radically trimming the size of the cabinet – but some fear the new ‘super-ministries are taking on more than they can handle.

18 Sep 17

Wine Lovers’ Paradise in Vibrant Zupa Region