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(3rd LD) S. Korea issues travel warning for Turkey over coup attempt

All News 15:33 July 16, 2016

(ATTN: RECASTS headline, lead, throughout with ministry's travel warning)

SEOUL, July 16 (Yonhap) -- Seoul's foreign ministry issued a travel advisory for Turkey on Saturday amid a coup attempt in the country.

The government decided to issue the special travel warning, effective immediately, during an emergency meeting of relevant ministries, advising its citizens to leave the region or cancel non-essential trips there, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

The warning will be effective until Aug. 29, and could be lifted early or extended according to the local situation.

"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 the meeting.

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 military 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.

The ministry earlier asked South Korean nationals traveling and living in Turkey not to venture outside and to check local news reports frequently.

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

The ministry said it is reviewing whether to send an emergency response team to Turkey and is consulting with air carriers to see if it can help South Koreans return home as soon as possible.

Earlier in the day, the South Korean government 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.



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