ISTANBUL - Turkey's former armed forces chief was detained on Thursday in an investigation into the military's role in pushing the country's first Islamist-led government out of power in 1997, local media reported.

Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan, who pioneered Islamist politics in Turkey, resigned in June 1997, months after the military-dominated National Security Council warned him over policies it perceived as undermining the secular constitution.

The episode was dubbed Turkey's "post-modern coup" as the generals used pressure behind the scenes to force Erbakan from power rather than the direct intervention employed in three outright coups in 1960, 1971 and 1980.

On Thursday state prosecutors investigating the case ordered the arrest of Ismail Hakki Karadayi, chief of general staff from 1994 to 1998, Turkish television stations said - the latest humiliation for the once all-powerful military.

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