Dozens of academics held in Turkey’s post-coup crackdown
ISTANBUL - Agence France-PresseTurkey on Aug. 19 detained dozens of academics suspected of backing Fethullah Gülen, the alleged mastermind of last month’s failed coup attempt, while pressing ahead with raids on businesses linked to the U.S.-based Islamic scholar.
Prosecutors issued arrest warrants for 84 academics nationwide, Doğan News Agency reported, while the state-run Anadolu Agency said Istanbul authorities were separately hunting 62 academics working at Istanbul University.
Some 74 scholars have been detained so far in both operations, media said.
A large majority of the suspects in the nationwide raids were from Selçuk University in the Central Anatolian province of Konya, a conservative bastion of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), including the university’s former rector, Professor Hakkı Gökbel.
Turkey has pressed ahead with a vast crackdown on alleged coup plotters who tried to oust President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan from power on the night of July 15.
Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said this week that more than 40,000 state employees had been detained in the month since, with more than 20,000 arrested.
More than 5,000 civil servants have been dismissed and almost 80,000 others suspended, Yıldırım added.