Turkish military has purged 19,495 members since 2016 coup attempt: ministry

ISPARTA, TURKEY - OCTOBER 12 : President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan (R) views soldiers parading during the badge ceremony of specialized sergeant commando trainees at Counter Terrorism School and Training Center Command in Isparta, Turkey on October 12, 2018. AFP PHOTOS

A total of 19,495 military members have been purged from the Turkish Armed Forces since a failed 2016 coup, the defense ministry said on Friday, according to the Turkish media.

Turkey accuses the faith-based Gülen movement of orchestrating the abortive putsch, although it strongly denies any involvement.

The dismissals from the military are mainly executed over alleged ties to the movement.

The Turkish government has purged some 130,000 civil servants since the coup attempt.

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