Turkey: 1000 detained over suspected links to Gulen

Turkey's state-run news agency says police have launched simultaneous operations across the country, detaining hundreds of people with suspected links to US -based cleric Fethullah Gulen.

Over 1,000 Fetullah Terrorist Organisation (FETO) suspects were arrested in simultaneous police raids across Turkey, the Interior Minister said on Wednesday.

It was not immediately clear if the suspensions were directly connected to the detention of the suspects whom Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu described as "secret imams" who had allegedly infiltrated the police force.

The operations were carried out as part of a probe led by the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor's Office, state-run Anadolou Agency reported, adding that a nationwide hunt for more suspects continued.

Police officers escort people, arrested because of suspected links to Pa. -based cleric Fethullah Gulen, in Kayseri, Turkey, Wednesday, April 26, 2017.




Turkey has detained over 1,000 suspects in a massive new crackdown on alleged supporters of US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen. Local media say arrest warrants have been issued for more than 3,000 people.

The latest detentions came 10 days after voters narrowly backed plans to expand Erdogan's already wide powers in a referendum which opposition parties and European election observers said was marred by irregularities.

Gulen, self-exiled in the United States for more than a decade, denies his involvement in the failed coup in July 2016 and repeatedly denounced the brutal persecution of his followers, which he calls a true witch hunt. The "Yes" camp won 51.41 percent of the vote in the April 16 referendum on creating a presidential system in Turkey but opponents claim the result would have been reversed in a fair poll.

Also Wednesday, Turkish warplanes struck Kurdish targets in northern Iraq, killing six militants, the military said in a statement, as part of a widening campaign against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

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