Turkey detains 1,098 in latest raids

President Recep Erdogan
President Recep Erdogan Facts on Turkey

Turkish authorities detained 1,098 people over the past one week for suspected links to militant groups or 2016 failed coup attempt.

In a statement on Monday, the Interior Ministry said 831 of those were detained for suspected ties to the U.S.-based Muslim cleric, Fethullah Gulen, whom Ankara blames for orchestrating an attempted coup in July.

Mr. Gulen denies any involvement.

The ministry said another 213 of those were suspected of links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which has carried out a three-decade insurgency against the government and is considered a terrorist organisation by the U.S., Turkey and Europe.

The ministry said forty-six people were detained over alleged links to Islamic State, while eight more were held for suspected ties to “leftist terrorist groups”.

Following the July 15, 2016 coup, Turkey has arrested some 50,000 people and sacked or suspended more than 150,000 in the military, civil service and private sector as part of a sweeping crackdown that has worried rights groups and some Western nations.

The Turkish government, however, said the purges were justified by the gravity of the threats it was facing.



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