Owner, execs of pharma company detained on accusation of ‘being inspired by putschists’

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İrfan Koç

İrfan Koç, the owner of the Onko Koçsel pharmaceutical company, was detained on Thursday over coup charges along with two other executives.

According to the state-run Anadolu news agency, police took the owner, Onko’s general manager Tuğçe Koç and human resources director Ayda Onat into custody on Thursday.

An investigation was launched into the three after the text of a warning sent by Onat to all employees during the July 15 coup attempt was published in the media.

“Dear Onko Koçsel family, we strongly recommend that you not leave your homes for your own safety, and we hope the country achieves peace as soon as possible. Sincerely,” read the statement.

After the coup failed, a company worker who was later dismissed filed a complaint against the company, accusing it of ties to the Gülen movement, which the government blames for the coup attempt; of abetting an armed terrorist group; and of taking part in attempts to topple the government.

According to Turkish media, the company was suspected of being inspired by the Peace at Home Council, a controversial rogue group within the military that claimed to be an executive body of the coup attempt, as it used the word “peace” in its own statement.

Established in 1987, the Istanbul-based Onko produces oncologic pharmaceuticals at its factory in Kocaeli province. The company also has two overseas branches in the US state of Florida and Sofia, Bulgaria. (Turkey Purge)

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