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Turkish police search premises of two holdings

Ankara-based Koza Ipek Holding, Kaynak Holding in Istanbul face search over allegedly giving financial support to a terrorist organization

Turkish police search premises of two holdings


 Turkish police is carrying out a search at Koza Ipek Holding in Ankara and Kaynak Holding in Istanbul, accused of providing financial support for a terrorist organization.  

Security sources said that officers from the Organized Crimes Directorate are searching Koza Ipek offices in Ankara, a week after they carried out searches in the conglomerate’s 23 companies.

The holding is accused of providing financial support to what officials describe as the "Gulenist Terror Organization" -- the movement led by U.S.-based Turkish preacher Fetullah Gulen that the government accuses of plotting to overthrow the Turkish government.

The Ankara Public Prosecutor’s Office ordered the search Wednesday after it requested new documents from the holding’s authorities. Sources say there are no new arrest warrants.

On Sept. 1, six people were arrested and an arrest warrant issued for Akin Ipek, the group's chairman, who the sources said was thought to be in the U.K. During searches police confiscated documents and computers.

Koza Ipek was founded in 1948 by Akin Ipek’s father Ali as a printing company. Today it has interests in the media, energy, construction and mining. Among its media holdings are the Bugun and Kanalturk TV stations and dailies Bugun and Millet.

Separately, Istanbul police is conducting searches at the Kaynak Holding for the second day in a row. Kaynak owns 23 companies with interests including media, education, tourism and logistics.

Employees were not allowed to enter the offices on Wednesday.

Security sources said the search operation -- which was confirmed Tuesday by the company on its Twitter account -- was in relation to allegations of providing financial support to and disseminating propaganda for the “Gulenist Terrorist Organization” as well as money laundering.

Kaynak was the subject of a tax investigation last year.

There were no reports on arrests or confiscations as a result of Tuesday’s raids.

According to Kaynak’s website, the conglomerate was established in 1979 as a publishing company and now spans 16 sectors. It employs more than 8,000 staff and trades in more than 100 countries.

The Turkish government accuses the Gulen movement, led by Fetullah Gulen, of plotting to overthrow the government by infiltrating state institutions, mainly the police and the judiciary.

Gulen supporters are accused by the government of engaging in long-term wiretapping on high-ranking government officials and mounting a coup d'etat attempt through a graft investigation in December 2013, which had then targeted Cabinet members.

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