Turkey has reportedly suspended 12,801 police officers, citing their links to Fethullah Gulen, who Turkey believes is the mastermind behind the failed coup in July.
The suspension of police officers comes amidst the country extended the state of emergency, which declared after the coup till October 19, for a further three months.
According to a statement released by Turkish police, 2,523 officers among the suspended were police chiefs. It is estimated that Turkey has a total police force of about 250,000.
The statement revealed that the suspended officers “have been assessed to have communications or links to the Gulenist Terror Organisation, identified as a threat to national security,” Reuters reported.
Several media reports from Ankara reveal that around 100,000 people in the military, civil service, police and judiciary have already been sacked or suspended after allegedly finding their alliance with U.S.—based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen’s movement.
Besides these, almost 32,000 people have been arrested for having alleged connection with the failed attempt to throw out President Tayyip Erdogan.
Following the coup attempt, Turkey requested the United States to extradite Gulen and prosecute him on charges that he executed the plan to overthrow the government.
However, the Sunni Muslim cleric, Gülen, who place himself as an advocate of moderate Islam and interfaith dialogue, denied having any link to the uprising.
Meanwhile, Turkish police reportedly detained a brother of the Gülen, Kutbettin Gülen, from a home of a relative in the western Izmir province.
Ankara accused of him having “membership of an armed terror group,” the state-run Anadolu news agency reported. According to police officials, books were confiscated in the raid and he is being questioned by anti-terrorist police.
Earlier in July and August, two of Gulan’s nephews were arrested by Turkish police.