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Crackdown Concerning Commanders Charged as Coup Co-Conspirators Continues
The General Directorate of Police and its surroundings in Ankara, Turkey, bombed during the attempted coup on July 15, 2016. (Pivox/Wikimedia Commons)

Crackdown Concerning Commanders Charged as Coup Co-Conspirators Continues

A top Turkish prosecutor on Tuesday ordered the detention of over 80 military personnel and the dismissal of nearly 850 soldiers suspected of supporting the exiled businessman and preacher Fethullah Gülen whom Turkey accuses of plotting the failed 2016 coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Turkey’s chief prosecutor of the western Izmir province oversaw the statewide purge, which spanned 39 provinces and included several high-ranking officers accused of backing Gülen. For the past four years, over 80,000 soldiers, journalists, judges, and businessmen have been arrested, with an additional 150,000 military personnel and civil servants discharged or fired over suspicions of participation in the unsuccessful overthrow of the government. Some 250 people were killed in July 2016 when parts of the Turkish armed forces attempted to seize control of the country, citing Erdoğan’s erosion of Turkey’s democratic and secular norms. Ankara said the plotters were linked to the United States-based Gülen, who denied the charges. Last week, a Turkish court sentenced hundreds of army officers, pilots and civilians to life in prison over the failed bid to topple the government.

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