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Turkey fires more than 2,000 police over failed coup

17 agosto 2016 | 10.11
LETTURA: 2 minuti

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More than 2,360 police officers and hundreds of members of the military and the BTK information and communications technology authority with alleged links to last month's coup bid were dismissed in Turkey on Wednesday.

Those fired under two new emergency rule decrees were described as having links to the US- based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, who denies accusations by Ankara that he orchestrated the attempted coup in mid-July.

Turkey's TIB telecoms authority was closed and Turkey's president will now appoint the head of the armed forces under the decrees, which were published in the country's Official Gazette.

Turkish police on Tuesday raided 44 companies in Istanbul and sought the arrest of 120 company executives as part of a probe into last month's failed coup, state media reported.

A day earlier, police raided three Istanbul court houses searching for 173 judicial officials.

Some 240 people died resisting the coup on 15 and 16 July, as rebel parts of the military tried to seize control of Turkey, sending tanks into Ankara and Istanbul and commandeering warplanes and helicopters.

An estimated 26,000 people have been detained and 82,000 dismissed or suspended amid a purge of the military and public services since the coup attempt and the start of a three-month state of emergency on 21 July.

Previous emergency rule decrees ordered the closure of thousands of private schools, charities and other institutions suspected of links to Gulen, whose extradition Turkey has requested from the US.

Gulen's followers are alleged to have set up a parallel state and to have strong roots in Turkey's business world.

Turkey's Islamist-leaning president Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed earlier this month to root out businesses, schools and charities allegedly linked to Gulen. "We are not going to show anyone any mercy," he said.

The purges have stoked fears for the stability of a key NATO ally amid concerns among Western allies that Erdogan is using the failed putsch to further tighten his grip on power.

Ratings agency S&P downgraded its credit rating for Turkey last month and Germany's trade association warned against new investment in the country.

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