Çankırı Chief Public Prosecutor Hüsnü Aldemir likened the Gülen movement to a Jewish organization during a meeting with unit chiefs and muhtars, Haberci18 news reported on Friday.
“Some media or social media channels often say that we are being soft on ‘FETÖ’ [a derogatory term used by government circles to refer to the faith-based Gülen movement] members and that we are investigating those who are not part of it. This is a wrong perception. … This organization is very complex, just like a Jewish organization, everything is planned out. That is why we are investigating it so thoroughly,” said Aldemir.
Karel Valansi, a columnist from the t24 news website and Şalom, an Istanbul-based Jewish weekly, criticized Aldemir’s statements in a social media message, saying: “What then, if even a public prosecutor speaks like that.”
Turkey survived a military coup attempt on July 15 that killed over 240 people. Immediately after the putsch, the government along with Turkey’s autocratic President Tayyip Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen movement. The movement strongly denies any involvement in the coup attempt.
Fethullah Gülen, who inspired the movement, strongly denied having any role in the failed coup and called for an international investigation into it, but President Erdoğan — calling the coup attempt “a gift from God” — and the government initiated a widespread purge aimed at cleansing sympathizers of the movement from within state institutions, dehumanizing its popular figures and putting them in custody.
At least 161,751 people were detained or investigated and 50,334 people were arrested in Turkey in the framework of the Turkish government’s massive post-coup witch hunt campaign targeting alleged members of the Gülen movement since the controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016, according to statistics reported by state-run Anadolu news agency by basing on information taken from the officials from Turkey’s Justice Minsitry on June 13. (SCF with turkishminute.com) June 18, 2017