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20 officers arrested over Gülen links in Konya-based coup probe

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Twenty military officers were arrested on Friday as part of a Konya-based investigation targeting alleged followers of the faith-based Gülen movement in the military, the state-run Anadolu news agency has reported.

According to the report, the Konya Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office recently issued detention warrants for 70 officers, 65 of whom were subsequently detained as a result of operations across 32 provinces. Twenty of the 65 military officers were arrested while 45 of them were released on judicial probation on Friday. The court also imposed a travel ban on the 45 officers who were released.

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 pinned the blame on the Gülen movement.

Fethullah Gülen, who inspired the movement, strongly denied having any role in the failed coup and called for an international investigation into it, but President 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.

Turkey has suspended or dismissed more than 150,000 judges, teachers, police and civil servants since July 15.

According to a report by the state-run Anadolu news agency on May 28, 154,694 individuals, including journalists, teachers, judges, prosecutors, police and military officers, academics, governors and businessmen have been detained and 50,136 have been jailed due to alleged Gülen links since the failed coup attempt.

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