As part of government operations targeting the Gülen movement, 24 engineers who work for the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBİTAK) were detained on Thursday.
The 24 engineers were detained in operations in Kocaeli, İstanbul and Ankara as part of an investigation launched in Kocaeli province. All suspects were taken to Kocaeli for interrogation.
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 Recep Tayyip Erdoğan called the coup “a great gift of God” and pinned the blame on the Gülen movement, inspired by US-based Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen.
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.