Turkey suspends 95 police as post-coup crackdown rolls on: broadcaster
ISTANBUL – Turkish authorities suspended 95 Istanbul police officers, including police chiefs, on Monday, broadcaster CNN Turk reported, the latest steps in a sweeping crackdown to target security forces following a failed coup last month.
About 80,000 people in the police, military, judiciary and civil service have been sacked or suspended since the failed July 15 coup, when a group of rogue soldiers attempted to topple the government. Turkey says followers of US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen were behind the attempt.
Gulen, who has lived in self-imposed exile in rural Pennsylvania since 1999, denies the charge and has condemned the coup.
The 95 officers were suspended from duty at Istanbul police headquarters in Istanbul, CNN Turk said. No one was immediately available for comment at the Istanbul police headquarters.
Separately, photos published by state-run Anadolu Agency showed lorries draped with Turkish flags hauling armored vehicles, covered in tarpaulin, out of barracks in Istanbul and Ankara, to be taken to locations outside the cities.
Under a decision taken after last month’s coup, all military barracks within the two cities are to be moved elsewhere by Sept. 11.
Istanbul and Ankara are to be transferred outside the cities by Sept. 11. Anadolu said armored vehicles from the 66th mechanized infantry brigade were transported out of the Bastabya barracks in Istanbul. It said the transfer of military vehicles would continue.
Coup plotters had commandeered vehicles from the Bastabya barracks on the night of the coup, sending them to Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport and the police headquarters.