Turkey arrests former policeman over murder of Russian ambassador Karlov: Report

Turkey arrests former policeman over murder of Russian ambassador Karlov: Report


A former policeman has been arrested over the 2016 assassination of Russian Ambassador to Ankara Andrei Karlov, Turkey's state-run Anadolu Agency reported on July 26.

The policeman, identified only as Ufuk G., was suspected of being an accomplice of Mevlüt Mert Altıntaş, the Russian envoy’s late assassin.

Karlov was assassinated at an art gallery in Ankara on Dec. 19, 2016 by Altıntaş, an off-duty police officer.

An official Turkish investigation later discovered Altıntaş had links to what authorities labelled as the Fetullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) headed by U.S.-based Islamic cleric Fethullah Gülen, who is widely believed to be behind the 2016 coup attempt.

According to the report on July 26, Altıntaş and Ufuk G. “were staying in the same FETÖ cell and went to the organization’s meetings together.”

A judicial source speaking to the agency told that Ufuk G. was accused of being a member of a terrorist organization, a charge that he denied.

In April this year, a former Turkish civil servant was arrested, while prosecutors issued detention warrants for eight people, including Gülen, over suspected links to the assassination.

The civil servant was found to be a user of ByLock, an encrypted mobile phone application used by FETÖ members to communicate during and after the 2016 coup attempt. He was reportedly responsible for deleting Altıntaş’s e-mails and for conveying the network’s instructions to him and organizing the assassination.

In January, another former civil servant from Turkey’s Information and Communication Technologies Authority (BTK) was detained on charges of association in plotting manslaughter.

Late last year, six people were arrested over Karlov's assassination, including three police officers, Guru Media Broadcast Group Chairman Hayreddin Aydınbaş, and Mustafa Timur Özkan, who organized the art exhibit.

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