Turkey's Erdogan dismisses Western criticism of post-coup crackdown

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan attends an interview with Reuters at the Presidential Palace in Ankara, Turkey, July 21, 2016. REUTERS/Umit Bektas

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan on Friday dismissed Western criticism of mass detentions after a failed coup and said countries that should be praising Turkey for putting down the attempted putsch were instead standing “by the plotters”.

Erdogan and the government blamed U.S.-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen for orchestrating the coup attempt. Tens of thousands of his suspected followers in the military, police, judiciary, academia, civil service and other institutions have been suspended, detained or put under investigation.

Erdogan said the numbers of people detained would rise if more were found to have been supporting the plot.

Reporting by Seda Sezer; Writing by Nick Tattersall; Editing by Gareth Jones