Turkish government detains 774 people over their alleged links to Gülen movement in a week

Turkish government has detained at least 774 people over their alleged links to the Gülen movement in the week of September 11-18, 2017, according to a statement by Turkey’s Interior Ministry on Monday.

Turkish government has started a massive post-coup witch hunt campaign targeting the alleged members of Gülen movement following a controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016.

Meanwhile, on Monday, Turkish police detained 10 former executives of a youth education foundation that was closed by government decree in an İstanbul-based coup probe over alleged links to the Gülen movement, CNN Türk reported. According to the report, detention warrants have been issued for 26 people working as executives for the foundation.

Also, a total of 13 people, including four officers, five noncommissioned officers, two civil servants and two military cadets, have been detained as part of an investigation by the Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s Office into the Gülen movement, accused by the Turkish government of mounting a botched coup attempt in July 2016, the Doğan news agency reported on Monday. According to the report, nine of the suspects who were detained were still working while four of them were dismissed from their jobs under government decrees issued as part of emergency rule.

Turkey survived a controversial military coup attempt on July 15, 2016 that killed 249 people. Immediately after the putsch the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with Turkey’s autocratic President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan 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’s Justice Ministry announced on July 13 that 50,510 people have been arrested and 169,013 have been the subject of legal proceedings on coup charges since the failed coup.

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