Over 41,000 education staff dismissed since 2016 coup attempt in Turkey

A total of 34,000 teachers have been dismissed along with 5,882 academics and 1,372 administrative personnel from universities in Turkey as part of a post-coup crackdown conducted by the government, a recent report said.

The Human Rights Association’s (İHD) İstanbul branch released a report on rights violations in the education sector during a press conference on Thursday. The number of dismissed teachers has reached 34,000, that of academics 5,882 and university personnel 1,372, the report said.

Meanwhile, the number of teachers who committed suicide after losing their jobs now totals 50, İHD officials said. Those dismissed were accused of having links to the Gülen movement, the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) or other alleged terrorist groups.

Turkey survived a controversial military coup attempt on July 15, 2016 that killed 249 people. Immediately after the putsch, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan also pinned the blame on the Gülen movement.

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.

Turkey has suspended or dismissed more than 150,000 judges, teachers, police and civil servants since July 15. On December 13, 2017 the Justice Ministry announced that 169,013 people have been the subject of legal proceedings on coup charges since the failed coup.

Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu announced on April 18, 2018 that the Turkish government had jailed 77,081 people between July 15, 2016 and April 11, 2018 over alleged links to the Gülen movement. (SCF with turkeypurge.com)

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