Turkey, July 15 coup bid

55 FETO suspects nabbed across Turkey

Arrests made after prosecutors in Balikesir, Van, Edirne, Istanbul provinces issue warrants for 91 suspects

Mirac Kaya, Necat Hazar, Hakan Mehmet Sahin, Filiz Kinik Oz and Ali Cevahir Akturk   | 09.02.2021
55 FETO suspects nabbed across Turkey


At least 55 people with suspected links to the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), the group behind the 2016 defeated coup in Turkey, were arrested in countrywide raids, security sources and authorities said on Tuesday.

Prosecutors in the northwestern Balikesir province issued arrest warrants for 13 suspects as part of a probe into the terror group’s civilian wing, a source said on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

Gendarmerie forces conducted operations across six provinces and arrested 12 suspects, with efforts underway to nab the remaining individual, the source added.

Separately, 12 more suspects were held in Van-based operations across five provinces, the provincial security directorate said in a statement.

Prosecutors in Van had issued arrest warrants for 16 suspects, including two police officers, two teachers, and a prison guard, according to the statement.

Police operations to arrest the remaining four suspects were underway, it added.

Prosecutors in the northwestern Edirne province issued arrest warrants for 20 suspects, another source said. 

Police launched operations across 10 provinces to arrest the suspects, including dismissed academicians, doctors, and lawyers, the source said.

Prosecutors in Istanbul issued arrest warrants for 42 military officers as part of a probe into the terror group's infiltration of the Turkish Armed Forces, said another source, also requesting anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

At least 31 of the suspects have been arrested in operations in 15 provinces, according to the source. 

The suspects are accused of harassing and forcing cadets to resign from the Turkish Air Force Academy, said the source, adding that some 780 students left the academy between 2006 and 2014 due to these individuals’ actions. 

FETO and its US-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016, in which 251 people were martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

Ankara accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.

*Writing by Gozde Bayar in Ankara

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