35 more detained in 6 provinces over alleged Gülen links

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Turkish police on Saturday detained 35 people including six lawyers as part of an investigation into the faith-based Gülen movement, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

According to the report police raided 40 homes in six provinces as part of an Adana-based investigation. The detainees are suspected of having used a smart phone application known as ByLock.

Turkish authorities believe ByLock is a communication tool among followers of the Gülen movement, which is accused by the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government of orchestrating a failed coup, a claim the movement denies.

The Interior Ministry announced on Monday that 623 people had been detained in one week due to alleged links to the Gülen movement, bringing the total number of people taken into custody in January to 2,426.

A total of 62,895 people were detained in 2017 as part of investigations into the movement, according to Interior Ministry reports.

Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu said on Jan. 5 that 48,305 people were jailed in 2017 alone over Gülen movement links.

Soylu said on Dec. 12 that 55,665 people have been jailed and 234,419 passports have been revoked as part of investigations into the movement since the failed coup.

Soylu on Nov. 16 had said eight holdings and 1,020 companies were 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 declared after the coup attempt.

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