TURKEY CALM ON 1ST DAY OF EMERGENCY

ISTANBUL, -- Turkey woke up to its first full day under a state of emergency Thursday, imposed by the government the previous night.

"Everything is looking normal" in the streets of Istanbul, a resident said at 8 am (0500 GMT), with people commuting to work or taking coffees in the city's cafes.

The three-month nationwide state of emergency was aimed at pursuing a "parallel structure" of exiled cleric Fethullah Gulen, blamed for the coup, government spokesman Numan Kurtulmus said Wednesday.

Gulen has denied any involvement in Friday's attempted coup, which left more than 260 people dead and 1,500 injured.

Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Simsek insisted the state of emergency would not curtail basic freedoms, including restrictions on movement, gatherings and free press.

Parliament, dominated by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's ruling Justice and Development Party, was to meet Thursday to review the state of emergency.

The government has rounded up or dismissed tens of thousands of civil servants, teachers, lawyers and soldiers. Government supporters have called for the death penalty for coup plotters.

Istanbul Mayor Kadir Topbas told a crowd in the city's Taksim Square this week the he had ordered a burial plot to be set aside for any dead coup plotters, to be called "the graveyard for traitors."

"Everyone visiting the place will curse them and they won't be able to rest in their graves," he was quoted as saying by Hurriyet Daily news late Wednesday.

Opposition politicians also expressed fear of reprisals. "Unfortunately, we are seeing a civilian counter-coup," Lawmaker Ziya Pir of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party said.

Source: Name News Network