Upon Erdogan’s order the police launched nationwide raids to detain 122 individuals accused of ties to the Gulen group blamed for the 2016 alleged failed military coup. Turkish police launched nationwide raids on Tuesday to detain 122 individuals accused of ties to the group blamed for a 2016 failed military coup, state media reported.
Prosecutors from Istanbul, the eastern coastal province of Izmir and the central province of Konya issued dozens of arrest warrants for suspects including soldiers — some still on active duty and some already sacked — according to the Anadolu news agency. The agency said 41 suspects had been caught so far.
Since the attempted overthrow of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, tens of thousands have been detained on suspicion of ties to US-based Fethullah Gulen, who is accused of ordering the failed coup. He strongly denies the accusation.
Since 2016, more than 140,000 public sector employees have been sacked or suspended over suspected links to Gulen.
There have been hundreds of detentions in recent months despite criticism from Western allies and rights activists who say Ankara is using the purge to target opponents.
Turkish officials say the raids are necessary to remove Gulen’s influence from state institutions.
Police based in Izmir were looking for 42 suspects there and in 17 other provinces, Anadolu said. Authorities believed members of Gulen’s network had used pay phones to contact the suspects, it added.
Istanbul’s prosecutors office said another 40 suspects including high ranking military personnel were being sought in the city and 14 other provinces. Authorities in Konya were looking for another 40 suspects, including soldiers on active duty, there and in 25 other provinces, the news agency reported.
Source: Asharq Al-Awsat
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