Ankara, Feb 12 (IANS) Turkey on Tuesday ordered the detention of 1,112 people over suspected links to the network of US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, accused of orchestrating an attempted coup in 2016, the media reported.
Warrants were issued for those with suspected links to the network of Gulen, CNN reported citing a Ministry of Interior source.
According to the report, the raids covered 75 cities across Turkey. State news agency Anadolu said that 641 suspects had been arrested so far as the police continue their nationwide operation.
Some were also accused of having an active role in the 2010 cheating scandal involving an exam police officers must take to become police inspectors.
At least 45 people who are suspected of obtaining the questions prior to taking the exam allegedly hold office in Ankara, the report said.
Ankara accuses the US-based Gulen and his network of orchestrating the coup bid in July 2016, in which 250 people were killed, and has been pushing for his extradition.
The attempted coup, undertaken by a faction of the military, saw tanks roll into the country’s two largest cities of Ankara and Istanbul. Bombs struck the Parliament building in the capital and a helicopter stolen by rogue pilots was shot down by an F-16 jet.
In 2017, nearly 500 people accused of plotting to overthrow the Turkish government appeared in a mass trial.
Anadolu reported at the time that Gulen was one of seven people who had been formally charged in absentia.
Gulen, who lives in exile in Pennsylvania, has denied involvement in the plot.