Turkey’s Coup Plotters: High-Ranking Soldiers, Judges
After Friday’s failed coup, Turkey’s government launched massive arrests of coup plotters that include high-ranking soldiers and judges.
BBC reports that around 6,000 people are detained over Friday’s failed coup. This report was attested by Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag.
“The clean-up operations are continuing.” – Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag
According to media reports, at least 3,000 soldiers have been arrested and around 2,700 judges nabbed since the coup came to an end.
In addition, some 44 judges and prosecutors were detained overnight in the central city of Konya and 92 in the south-eastern city of Gazientep.
Turkey’s Failed Coup
The attempted coup that hit overnight across Turkey has killed a total of 265 people and left 1,440 injured. The Turkish government also said 104 ‘plotters’ were killed.
Some factions of Turkey’s army had officially declared a coup and martial law late Friday night. Following the announcement that they had control of the country, army factions blocked bridges, low-flying fighter jets circled the skies and deafening gunfire and loud explosions rocked Ankara and Istanbul.
However, the planned coup failed when thousands of people followed President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s call to rise up against the coup-plotters and protect the country’s democracy. By Saturday morning, the rebel soldiers began to surrender their positions.
President Erdogan Blames Fethulla Gulen for the Coup
Turkey’s President Erdogan has pointed the finger at Fethulla Gulen, a US-based Turkish cleric, as the master-mind behind the plot. Mr. Gulen strongly denied the accusation.
According to the 75-year-old Turkish cleric: “I don’t even known who my followers [in Turkey] are.”
President Erdogan also called on the United States of America to extradite Mr. Gulen. But Secretary of State John Kerry said in a statement that Turkey should “present us with any legitimate evidence that withstands scrutiny. And the United States will accept that and look at it and make judgements about it appropriately.”
In addition, Secretary Kerry rebuked statements that the US was behind the coup attempt. Kerry said, “Public insinuations or claims about any role by the US in the failed coup attempt are utterly false and harmful to our bilateral relations.”