Turkish intelligence agency to be attached to President’s Office, report says

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A handout picture taken and released on July 22, 2016 shows Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L) meeting with Intelligence Chief Hakan Fidan (R) at Presidential Complex, in Ankara, on July 22, 2016. Turkey detained 283 members of the presidential guard of Recep Tayyip Erdogan after last week's attempted coup, a government official said July 22. The guard are members of the special forces regiment stationed at the presidential palace in Ankara. There are at least 2,500 members, according to local media. / AFP PHOTO / TURKISH PRESIDENTIAL PRESS OFFICE / KAYHAN OZER / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT " AFP PHOTO / TURKISH PRESIDENTIAL PRESS SERVICE / KAYHAN OZER " - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS

The Turkish government is working to restructure the country’s National Intelligence Organization (MİT), planning to detach it from the Prime Minister’s Office and attach it to the President’s Office, the pro-government Türkiye daily reported on Tuesday.

The daily said following an examination of the French and US models as well as a mixed model for the restructuring of the intelligence agency, MİT will be attached to the President’s Office but will also be connected to the Prime Minister’s Office.

According to the new model, MİT will work as two separate units for interior and exterior intelligence gathering. The name of the new intelligence agency will be the National Intelligence Directorate or National Security Undersecretariat.

Relying on government sources, the daily said the government will move forward with its plans to restructure MİT by issuing a government decree that has the force of law because a state of emergency that is currently in effect in Turkey allows the government to bypass Parliament through such controversial decrees.

The Justice and Development Party (AKP) government declared a three-month-long state of emergency in the aftermath of a failed coup attempt on July 15. In a move that attracted widespread criticism from opposition parties, the government on Monday extended the state of emergency for another three months.

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