Egypt media jumps the gun on Turkey coup

Cairo, Jul 17: Egyptians woke up on Saturday, July 16 to find some newspapers announcing the Turkish military's ouster of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, even as the strongman loathed by Cairo quashed a coup attempt.

"The Turkish army topples Erdogan," declared a red banner on the front page of the state's flagship Al-Ahram newspaper. "Recep Tayyip vanishes," said the subhead.

[Turkish military coup is fine, but Erdogan seems to have called for it]


"Army controls Turkey and deposes Erdogan," the private Al-Watan announced, labelling yesterday night's attempted coup by an army faction as "military disobedience".

Erdogan is a main backer of the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohamed Morsi, the Egyptian president whom the army deposed in 2013. Several Brotherhood leaders are in exile in Turkey, having fled a bloody crackdown against Islamists following Morsi's overthrow.

Erdogan regularly attacks what he calls Egypt's "coup", infuriating Cairo.

Some Egyptian media personalities could not contain their glee as news of the attempted coup percolated overnight.

"Good evening, good viewers everywhere! This is a special episode," announced Ahmed Moussa, a pro-government talkshow host on the private Sada el-Balad channel.

"First, what is happening in Turkey is not a coup. Not at all! It is a revolution from within the Turkish military. And whenever the Turkish military conducts a revolution, it always wins!" he beamed.

The coverage in the Egyptian media and the premature announcements of Erdogan's ouster prompted ridicule on social media.

"The coup is victorious in the pages of Egyptian newspapers," wrote one Twitter user.

Egypt's presidency, meanwhile, has remained mum on the coup attempt, while the foreign ministry released a statement on consular efforts to help Egyptians in Turkey.


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