Turkey arrests 1000 in connection with 2016 failed coup

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ANKARA, Turkey (A.W.)- On April 26, Turkish police announced they had recently arrested more than a 1,000 people accused of ties to the USA -based cleric Fethullah Gulen blamed for last year's failed coup.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.

The Hurriyet newspaper reported that arrest warrants had been issued against a total of 7,000 suspects across Turkey, citing unidentified sources.

More than 100,000 people, including police, military personnel and teachers, have been purged from the civil service as part of the crackdown on Gulen's movement since the coup.

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About 8,500 officials targeted FETO police infiltration in 81 provinces.

Turkey on Wednesday detained more than 1,000 alleged supporters of US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, the biggest crackdown since President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's victory in a referendum on ramping up his powers.

The latest detentions came 10 days after voters narrowly backed plans to expand Erdogan's already wide powers in a referendum which opposition parties and European election observers said was marred by irregularities.

Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said that the detention operation, which was conducted overnight, was aimed at cracking down on a Gulen network "that infiltrated our police force, called "secret imams", the Independent, UK reported".

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In the aftermath of the 15 July coup, which was led by military officers, 40,000 people were arrested and 120,000 sacked or suspended. Ankara has accused Gulen of masterminding the government takeover, whereas the cleric himself, who now lives in exile in the United States, has denounced the allegations.

"In Turkey, there was an attempted coup with a goal of toppling the government and destroying the state", he said in a recent interview.

Turkish-Iraqi border and is known as Zab in Iraq.

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) voted Tuesday to reopen a monitoring probe into Turkey over rights concerns, sparking anger from Ankara.

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