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13 high-ranking officers arrested over Gülen links in Mardin-based operation

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Thirteen out of 20 high-ranking military officers who were recently detained as part of a Mardin-based operation across 12 provinces were arrested on Wednesday due to alleged links to the faith-based Gülen movement.

Seven of the officers were released on judicial probation.

The arrested officers are being accused of membership in an armed terrorist organization.

Turkey survived a military coup attempt on July 15 that killed over 240 people and wounded more than a thousand others. Immediately after the putsch, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with President Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen movement, inspired by US-based Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen. The movement denies the accusations.

Over 135,000 people, including thousands within the military, have been purged due to their real or alleged connection to the Gülen movement since the coup attempt, according to a statement by the labor minister on Jan. 10. As of Feb. 1, 89,775 people were being held without charge, with an additional 43,885 in pre-trial detention due to their alleged links to the movement.

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