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(2nd LD) S. Korea to keep watchful eye on Turkey coup attempt

All News 14:07 July 16, 2016

(ATTN: UPDATES with South Koreans in Ataturk airport, government's emergency meeting; ADDS photo)

SEOUL, July 16 (Yonhap) -- Seoul's foreign ministry said Saturday it is keeping a watchful eye on the coup attempt in Turkey, adding it has started using its emergency hotline to contact South Koreans and organizations in the country.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said its embassy in Turkey will keep close contact with South Korean nationals and has asked them not to venture outside.

The ministry added that they should check local news reports frequently. Travelers are also advised to check possible cancellations of flight schedules, it added.

Some 110 South Korean nationals are estimated to be stuck at Ataturk airport in Turkey's largest city, according to the ministry.

"The ministry will keep a watchful eye on the situation in Turkey and be fully prepared to carry out safety measures," said Second Vice Foreign Minister Cho Tae-yul, during an emergency meeting with related government agencies.

The South Korean government also expressed grave concern over the incident in a statement, adding it hopes stability will be promptly restored in Turkey with the country abiding by its democratic constitution.

The Turkish military said Friday (local time) that it had taken full control of the country, but Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan later said the government is in charge again and those who attempted the coup are being rounded up.

At least 60 police officers and civilians are estimated to have been killed in the process, according to media reports.

colin@yna.co.kr
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