Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu has announced that a total of 292,000 people have been detained while 96,000 others have been jailed due to alleged links to the Gülen movement since a failed coup attempt in Turkey in July 2016.
Soylu’s remarks came during a meeting at the Turkish Parliament on Thursday.
The Turkish government accuses the Gülen movement of masterminding the failed coup on July 15, 2016 and labels it a “terrorist organization,” although the movement strongly denies involvement in the coup attempt or any terrorist activity.
The minister said there are currently 25,655 people in Turkey’s prisons who were jailed due to links to the Gülen movement.
Following the coup attempt, the Turkish government also removed more than 130,000 public servants from their jobs due to alleged Gülen links.
Soylu said 42,000 Interior Ministry personnel were removed from their posts due to Gülen links, while 14,000 others have been suspended and 13,000 were later reinstated.
“Our struggle against Fetö [a term coined by the Turkish government to refer to the Gülen movement as a terrorist organization] will continue until its last member is handed over to the judiciary,” said Soylu.
Since the coup attempt, followers of the Gülen movement have been subjected to a massive crackdown, with the Turkish government and pro-government media outlets demonizing its members.
In addition to the thousands who were jailed, scores of other Gülen movement followers had to flee Turkey to avoid the government crackdown.