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113 police officers, academics detained in Çorum, Trabzon over ties to Gülen

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A total of 106 police officers and seven academics were detained in Çorum and Trabzon provinces on Tuesday over alleged links to the Gülen movement, the Doğan news agency has reported.

Fifty police officers were detained, and arrest warrants were issued for another 56 in Çorum on Tuesday.

In a similar development, seven academics from Karadeniz Technical University were detained on Tuesday for their alleged use of ByLock, a smart phone messaging application.

39 arrested for ByLock

Twenty-one schoolteachers who were claimed to be using ByLock were also arrested on Monday in Kocaeli. Similarly, 18 public officials were arrested on Monday in Kayseri for allegedly using ByLock.

Opening an account at Bank Asya after the Dec.17 and Dec. 25, 2013 corruption operations and using the ByLock applications have been mentioned as the basic criteria for pursuing the witch-hunt against the Gülen movement.

The Justice and Development Party (AKP) government, which launched a war against the Gülen movement following the eruption of a corruption scandal in late 2013 in which senior government members were implicated, carried its ongoing crackdown on the movement and its sympathizers to a new level after a failed coup attempt on July 15 which killed 240 people and injured a thousand of others.

Although the movement strongly denies having any role in the corruption probe and the coup attempt, the government accuses it of having masterminded both despite the lack of any tangible evidence.

Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen called for an international investigation into the coup attempt, but President Recep Tayyip 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.

More than 100,000 people have been purged from state bodies, nearly 43,000 detained and 24,000 arrested since the coup attempt. Arrestees include journalists, judges, prosecutors, police officers, doctors, court personnel and even a comedian.

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