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Dozens face detention over Gülen ties in Ankara-based operations

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Turkish prosecutors have issued detention warrants for 38 people as part of two separate investigations in the Turkish capital city of Ankara due to their alleged links to the Gülen movement, the Demirören news agency reported on Friday.

The Turkish government accuses the Gülen movement of masterminding a 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.

Seventeen of the people facing detention are from Turkey’s Air Forces Command, while 21 others stayed in houses where Gülen-linked students gathered to prepare for public examinations prior to 2016. The investigations are being conducted by the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office.

Simultaneous raids are being carried out in 12 cities across the country to detain the suspects.

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.

According to a statement from Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu on Nov. 26, 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 the failed coup. The minister said there are currently 25,655 people in Turkey’s prisons who were jailed due to links to the Gülen movement.

The Turkish government also removed more than 130,000 civil servants from their jobs due to alleged Gülen links following the coup attempt.

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