Four more police chiefs removed as purges continue
Fevzi KIZILKOYUN ANKARA / Hürriyet
The Interior Ministry issued a “midnight decree” to call Van Police Chief Ümit Yurdakul, Muğla Police Chief Ahmet Akbal, Sivas Police Chief Selçuk Kızılay and Giresun Police Chief Hikmet Budak back to Ankara.Four more provincial police chiefs have been dismissed from their posts, joining a long list of officials removed by the government since the Dec. 17 corruption investigation began.
The Interior Ministry issued a “midnight decree” to call Van Police Chief Ümit Yurdakul, Muğla Police Chief Ahmet Akbal, Sivas Police Chief Selçuk Kızılay and Giresun Police Chief Hikmet Budak back to Ankara. The chief police inspectors in all of these provinces have been appointed as the new police chiefs.
Speaking to daily Hürriyet after the decree was published in the Official Gazette late March 15, Yurdakul said there was nothing extraordinary in the reappointment. “This is the consideration of our seniors. We came when they commissioned us, now we’re going as they decommissioned us,” he said, adding that his previous request to be removed from his post had been rejected.
Yurdakul had led the department of the Ankara police unit that arrested several retired generals during the Feb. 28 “post-modern coup” investigation, as well as the Ergenekon and Balyoz coup plot investigations.
Ahmet Akbal was appointed as Muğla’s police chief after his tenure as Istanbul Deputy Police Chief between 2007-2010. He was heavily criticized over recent attacks on the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) election office in the southwestern resort district of Fethiye.
Selçuk Kızılay is known for operations conducted against “Iranian spies” when he was police chief in the eastern province of Iğdır.
Hikmet Bulak is a seasoned police chief who was previously commissioned as the head of an intelligence unit and who served in various provinces as a police chief.