Arrest warrants out for FETO terror suspects
Dozens of suspects arrested in nationwide hunt
GAZIANTEP / BALIKESIR / BURSA, Turkey
Turkish security authorities on Monday launched multiple operations in various provinces to arrest terror suspects affiliated with FETO -- the terrorist group behind the bloody failed coup attempt of 2016.
Prosecutors issued arrest warrants for a total of 33 suspects, including 24 on-duty police force members, and security forces started simultaneous operations in 16 provinces.
Separately, prosecutors issued arrest warrants for 42 suspects found to be using ByLock -- FETO’s encrypted smartphone messaging app -- and in touch with terror affiliates through pay phone.
Security sources later announced that dozens of suspects, 33 in Gaziantep and 35 in Bursa, were arrested.
In addition, prosecutors issued arrest warrants for PKK and FETO terror suspects in the southeastern Sirnak province, one of the suspects was later remanded into custody.
FETO and its US-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
Turkey also 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.
The PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the US and EU -- has been responsible for the deaths of nearly 40,000 people, including women, children and infants. The YPG is PKK's Syrian offshoot.
* Writing by Ali Murat Alhas