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By Ayla Jean Yackley and Seyhmus Cakan ISTANBUL/DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (Reuters) - The Turkish government dismissed nearly 1,400 military personnel for suspected links to a cleric it blames for an attempted coup, state media said on Sunday, hours after President Tayyip Erdogan announced sweeping changes to the armed forces. The expulsions are the latest attempt by Erdogan to bring Turkey's military - long seen as the guardians of the secular republic - firmly under government control. On Saturday he said he planned to shut down existing military academies and put the armed forces under the command of the Defence Ministry.
Tens of thousands of supporters of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan are planning to rally in the German city of Cologne Sunday, as tensions over Turkey's failed coup put authorities on edge. Since the attempted military power grab on July 15, Erdogan's government has launched a crackdown on those allegedly linked to the putsch that has seen the detention of almost 19,000 people, sparking international concern. The political strife in Turkey has also found expression in Germany, which is home to the biggest Turkish diaspora.