The aftermaths of the Turkey coup attempt and the Nice lorry attack come into focus in the Sunday papers.
Louise Callaghan in Istanbul provides an excellent account of events in the Sunday Times.
“Gunshots split the air as helicopters and fighter jets screamed overhead,” she writes. “With a roar, hundreds of men shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ poured into the centre of Taksim Square. It looked as if war had broken out.
“It was 2am yesterday and the military coup against Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, was already beginning to fall apart.
“The dozen soldiers who, moments before, had been standing confidently behind camouflaged barricades in the centre of the square scattered, firing into the air.”
The Sunday Telegraph talks of revenge against the plotters by Mr Erdogan.
The paper continues: “After a night when Turkey’s democracy appeared to hang by a thread, Western and Middle Eastern leaders offered vocal support for Turkey’s democratic institutions.
“However, senior Western diplomats were privately voicing fears that Mr Erdogan would use the coup to entrench his powers.”
The Observer says Mr Erdogan fought back after managing to send a message to supporters via a video-call with a private broadcaster.
This, it continues, prompted thousands to wrest back state control with the help of the police and loyalists in the army.
“About 2,800 soldiers were arrested in a day of extraordinary drama that saw the putsch ruthlessly put down,” says the Observer.
“More than 2,700 judges were summarily dismissed for their alleged links to the coup’s leaders, while warrants were issued for the arrest of 140 Supreme Court members.
“The situation was stabilised after Erdogan’s supporters flooded the streets in the small hours of yesterday morning, swarming around the tanks and troops that seemed to have seized control of Turkey on Friday night.”
The Mail on Sunday’s Ian Birrell, in Istanbul, describes it as an astonishing call to arms, made from an iPhone held in the trembling hand of a newsreader, and broadcast live to a nation in the grip of a terrifying coup.
The Sunday Times says the coup was defeated, but asks what now for Turkey?
“Turkey is strategically and politically important. Mr Erdogan has unwisely picked quarrels with most of his eastern neighbours but the last thing Nato, with forces inside the country, wanted was a military takeover,” it concludes.
“For a few hours on Friday evening Angela Merkel must have been wondering what would happen to her deal with Mr Erdogan to stem the flow of Middle East migrants to the EU.
“A lot rests on this volatile country. The coup was defeated but the turbulence continues.”
The Sunday Telegraph believes the fate of Turkey is a test for the world.
“The West needs a stable Turkey. Turkey, of course, needs a stable Turkey,” it says.
“There is a temptation to see last Friday’s attempted coup and its aftermath entirely through the lens of the West’s problems – but at its heart is a nation struggling to hold on to constitutional norms.
“For their sake, as well as our own, peace must be forged. Turkey must shore up its place in the club of democratic nations, united in the face of Islamist extremism.”
The Observer’s Simon Tisdall comments: “Recep Tayyip Erdogan is a man of choleric disposition.
“The Turkish president has a record of ruthlessness in dealing with opponents and critics and thus his response to Friday’s attempted coup by sections of the Turkish military can be expected to be fierce and brutal.”
Families torn apart
The Sunday Times tells the moving story of Yannis Corviaux, one of two children to die in hospital the night after the Nice lorry attack.
“Yannis, a four-year-old with a mischievous grin, was having the time of his life, watching the Bastille Day fireworks and playing with friends on the beach,” it reports.
“It was the first time Yannis had seen fireworks and, when it was over, he did not want to go home. The family walked slowly up to the road and, unwittingly, into the path of the lorry driven by Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel.”
The Sunday Times says the Corviaux family are one of dozens torn apart by the bloodbath on Bastille Day.
The paper’s Matthew Campbell in Nice continues: “The Promenade des Anglais, a palm-fringed boulevard running along the beach, had turned into a scene of unspeakable horror, with pushchairs and cuddly toys crushed and abandoned.”
The Sunday Telegraph reports that French authorities withdrew police vans blocking off the promenade just hours before a 19-ton truck crushed at least 84 people to death.
“The disclosure raises serious questions over the security for the 30,000 people who had gathered on the Promenade des Anglais for the Bastille Day fireworks,” it says.
The Observer describes how some of the hundreds of bouquets that line the Promenade des Anglais have already begun to wilt in the July heat of the Riviera, but fresh replacements arrive by the minute.
“Although the promenade has reopened and the caravan of TV crews has started to move on, neither Nice nor France has yet awoken from the nightmare of Thursday night,” says the Observer.
“For a country already bitterly schooled in terror, this was both something dreadful and something utterly, appallingly novel.”
A nine-month-old baby being cradled by his father was one of those killed, reports James Fielding from Nice in the Sunday Express.
The Mail on Sunday says fears are growing that a “small number” of Britons were among those killed or critically injured.
Sun on Sunday chief feature writer Oliver Harvey, in Nice, says the city is wounded but defiantly beginning the journey to rediscovering its joie de vivre.
In the Sunday Mirror, Jonathan Miller, author of France, A Nation On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown, writes that an angry immigrant population and a strident right-wing faction has created a toxic and explosive mixture.
Red and yellow cards
Finally, the Sunday Telegraph reports that the Hampshire FA is to have an amnesty for unpaid fines for red and yellow cards dating back to 2006 for thousands of suspended amateur footballers.
The paper explains that large numbers of players dropped out of local leagues because they did not want to pay “late fines” which are much more than the original fine. Now, they will only have to pay the initial fine.
The Hampshire FA has, apparently, more than 3,500 players suspended for unpaid fines. Fines range between £15 and £50, depending on the offence, plus a £10 administration fee.
The body is quoted as saying: “We will probably get our hands slapped by the FA. But we are doing it to try to get people back in the game.”