Jan 07 2019

Turkey arrests 100 more soldiers over Gülen links

Turkish prosecutors in Ankara on Monday issued arrest warrants for 100 active-duty soldiers of the Turkish Land Forces Command, state-run Anadolu Agency reported.

The soldiers are being sought over alleged communications with members of the Gülen movement, which the Turkish government accuses of organising the failed coup in July 2016.

Turkish police on Monday detained some of the suspects in dawn raids in Ankara. Further detentions are in progress, Anadolu Agency said.

The Turkish government started a crackdown against the Gülen movement soon after the coup attempt. Thus far more than 150,000 people, including thousands of military officials, have been fired or suspended from their jobs, while tens of thousands of suspected Gülen devotees have fled abroad.

Turkish officials say the crackdown is needed to purge those associated with the Gülen movement from positions of influence. Others suggest the Turkish government’s actions are aimed at silencing and intimidating all dissenting voices within Turkish society, pointing to the often flimsy nature of the evidence used to support accusations and charges.