17 detained in first day of new year in witch hunt targeting Gülen movement

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Seventeen people including judges, prosecutors and military officers were detained on the first day of the new year as part of an investigation into the faith-based Gülen movement, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

According to the report, 15 judges, prosecutors and lawyers who were dismissed by the government following a failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016, were detained as part of a Tokat province-based investigation.

In a similar development, two military officers were detained in an Ankara investigation.

The Gülen movement is accused by the Turkish government of mounting the coup attempt. The movement strongly denies any involvement.

A total of 62,895 people were detained in 2017 as part of witch-hunt targeting the Gülen movement.

Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu said on Dec. 12 that 55,665 people have been jailed and 234,419 passports have been revoked as part of investigations into the movement since the failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016.

Minister Soylu on Nov. 16 had said eight holdings and 1,020 companies seized as part of operations against the movement.

The Justice Ministry announced on July 13 that 169,013 people have been the subject of legal proceedings on coup charges since the failed coup.

Turkey has suspended or dismissed more than 150,000 judges, teachers, police and civil servants since July 15 through government decrees issued as part of an ongoing state of emergency.

According to Ministry of Justice data, there are currently 384 prisons with a capacity of 207,279 in Turkey; however, the total number of inmates was 228,983 as of October 2017.

The Ministry of Justice plans to build 228 new prisons with a capacity of 137,687 in the next five years.

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