Turkey: Ex-admirals derided for statement on straits treaty

ISTANBUL (AP) — A group of more than 100 retired Turkish admirals have come under fire over a statement that government officials tied to past military coups in Turkey. In a declaration issued late Saturday, the 103 former navy officers criticized a suggestion that Turkey could withdraw from the international treaty that regulates shipping through the Bosporus and Dardanelles straits. Turkey’s vice president on Sunday compared the statement’s signatories to “cowards whistling in a graveyard.” A prosecutor opened an investigation. The possibility of leaving the 1936 Montreux Convention was raised earlier in the week amid discussions about the construction of a shipping canal that would bypass the Bosporus.