Gülen was planning to come to Turkey and lead the coup himself: Report
ANKARAU.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen was planning to come to Turkey himself to lead the July 2016 coup attempt but could not do so due to health problems, state-run Anadolu Agency reported on June 4, basing its report on information from the Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s Office.
According to a new indictment as a part of the probe into what the government and prosecutors call the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), the Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s Office has reportedly reached newly decoded emails sent through the Bylock smartphone app, an encrypted messaging application said to have been used by members of FETÖ.
“If my health lets me, I could also take part [in the coup attempt]. But it takes 10 hours to go to Turkey by plane and my heath may not allow it,” one of the members of the organization residing in Africa quoted Gülen as saying in one of the encrypted emails included in the recently prepared indictment.
According to the indictment, another FETÖ member, with the nickname “saliha86,” is reported to have written the following in an email dated Jan. 21, 2016 to a number of members of the organization: “The sermon on Friday was emotional and full of excitement. The whole camp cried very much. ‘Let all of you unite and walk. If we step back from our path, it means we are fickle,’ [Gülen] said. He cried a lot and when he cried we all cried too. ‘There is not long to go. This era will come to an end,’ he said. ‘This is not my own evaluation, the U.S., Russia, and ‘internal dynamics’ have agreed on this [the Turkish government] going,’ he said.”
The indictment also quotes another email again sent to other FETÖ members by the same user, reportedly quoting another of Gülen’s messages: “What goes around comes around in this world. You will see that how those spoiled and arrogant ones, who today seem to be flying in the sky with their vanity, will crash to the ground.”
According to the indictment, another message of Gülen was shared in the email group reading: “One day a holiday walks back and forth and says, ‘Let me stop by Turkey.’ When the holiday comes to Turkey and Egypt, it means it has come to the whole world.”
A report penned by a parliamentary commission tasked with probing the July 2016 coup attempt was released on May 26, concluding that FETÖ was absolutely behind the putsch while also noting that there was a general intelligence failure in preventing the deadly attempt.
The report addressed the growth of FETÖ since the mid-1960s and detailed its national and international structure under Gülen’s leadership. The study alleged that Gülen was linked to foreign secret services, without elaborating, although it did note that former CIA personnel supported Gülen in acquiring a U.S. green card.
Opposition parties have criticized the commission’s work for incompleteness and echoing the government’s stance on the issue.