Number of Turkish generals decreases 40 pct after post-coup purges

The number of generals and admirals in the Turkish military has decreased decreased from 326 to 196 (40 percent) in wake of a controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016 because of the massive purges by Turkish government according to a report by the state-run Anadolu news agency.

In response to the lack of military personnel after the Turkish government’s extra-judicial dismissals, Turkey’s Ministry of National Defense has reportedly employed 13,125 personnel, including commissioned officers, noncommissioned officers, contracted personnel and specialized sergeants.

According to the report, there were 198 generals, including 10 full generals, 23 lieutenant generals, 50 major generals and 115 brigadiers in the office of the Turkish Land Forces Command prior to the controversial coup attempt. These figures have decreased to 7 full generals, 14 lieutenant generals, 21 major generals and 76 brigadiers at Turkish Land Forces.

Until the controversial coup attempt, there were two full admirals, four vice-admirals, 12 rear admirals and 38 commodores in the Naval Forces Command. While the number of full admirals in the command after the coup attempt did not change, the number of vice-admirals has increased to five, the number of rear admirals has decreased to six and the number of commodores has decreased to 21.

There are two full generals, six lieutenant generals, three major generals and 33 brigadier generals in the Turkish Air Forces Command after the controversial coup attempt. These figures were two full generals, 8 lieutenant generals, 17 major generals and 45 brigadier generals before July 15, 2016.

While the number of commissioned officers was 32,189 in July of 2016, the figure has decreased to 24,705 after the dismissals and retirements. The number of reserve officers has increased 51 percent until May this year from 5,792 to 8,736. The number of contracted officers and soldiers has increased from 13,088 to 16,743. The number of applications for the Turkish Military Academy has increased from 46,736 to 157,635 since last year.

The Turkish General Staff announced earlier on July 27 that a total of 8,651 soldiers had taken part in the failed coup July 15, making up 1.5 percent of the military’s total personnel.

A controversial military coup attempt on July 15 killed 249 people. Immediately after the putsch, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with Turkey’s autocratic President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen movement and initiated a widespread purge aimed at cleansing sympathizers of the movement from within state institutions, dehumanizing its popular figures and putting them in custody.

Turkey’s Justice Ministry announced on July 13 that 50,510 people have been arrested and 169,013 have been the subject of legal proceedings on coup charges since the failed coup.

July 23, 2017

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