Saturday, November 28, 2020

93 more educators sought by prosecutor over Gülen links

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Detention warrants were issued on Thursday for 93 educators as part of an investigation into the faith-based Gülen movement, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

According to the report, as part of an Ankara-based investigation, police launched operations across Turkey to detain 93 educators from prep schools closed by a state of emergency decree following a failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016.

The tr724 news website reported in early March that in one month the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office had issued detention warrants for 300 teachers who worked in schools owned by people close to the Gülen movement.

A total of 10,472 people were detained in the first four months of the year over alleged links to the Gülen movement.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government pursued a crackdown on the Gülen movement following corruption operations in December 2013 in which the inner circle of the government and then-Prime Minister Erdoğan were implicated.

Erdoğan also accuses the Gülen movement of masterminding a failed coup attempt in Turkey on July 15, 2016.

Despite the movement strongly denying involvement in the failed coup, Erdoğan launched a witch-hunt targeting the movement following the putsch.

The European Commission (EC) on April 17 called on the Turkish government to “lift the state of emergency without delay,” saying that widespread dismissals, arrests and detentions continue to raise serious concerns.

Citing “the broad scale and collective nature, and the disproportionality of measures,” the EC in its “2018 Report on Turkey” said: “Since the introduction of the state of emergency, over 150 000 people were taken into custody, 78 000 were arrested and over 110 000 civil servants were dismissed whilst, according to the authorities, some 40 000 were reinstated of which some 3 600 by decree.”

Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu on Dec. 12, 2017 that 234,419 passports have been revoked as part of investigations into the movement since the failed coup.

On Nov. 16, 2017 Soylu had said eight holdings and 1,020 companies were seized as part of operations against the movement.

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