Erdogan’s Government Arrests Over 100 on Suspicion of Plotting Coup

Ankara, Turkey (Sputnik) – More than a hundred people were detained by Turkish law enforcement on Monday over alleged links to the movement of Erdogan’s ally-turned-bitter-rival Fethullah Gülen, who, in the view of Ankara, seeks to depose the current leader.

Some 105 people were detained in a police raid targeting the well-known construction company Dumankaya and Bank Asya, AFP reported.Those taken into custody include over 40 bank employees and 45 businesspeople. Two top executives of the construction firm were also among those arrested, Anadolu Agency wrote.

“Our board members were called to give a statement at the Financial Crimes Department on Monday morning,” Dumankaya confirmed in a statement.

Detainees are suspected of funding what Turkish prosecutors call a “terror organization” headed by the US-based Muslim cleric. Those arrested reportedly gave $17.5 million to Gulen’s group from 2004 to 2015.

Turkish flag Image Source: Quinn Dombrowski, Flickr, Creative Commons

Turkish flag
Image Source: Quinn Dombrowski, Flickr, Creative Commons

They have been also charged with spreading terrorist propaganda.

Initially, prosecutors issued 140 warrants, and more arrests are expected.

Authorities claimed that Gulen is behind the so-called Fethullah Terrorist Organization, and is hatching a plan to oust Erdogan. Gulen, exiled from Turkey in 1999, has repeatedly denied the existence of the group.

Gulen was Erdogan’s ally for many years until 2013, when a high-profile corruption scandal occurred.

Since that time, Erdogan has waged war against Gulen and his supporters. Over 2,300 people have been put in custody in connection to the movement since 2014.

This report prepared by Sputnik.