Turkey detains senior Gülen aide, nephew after coup attempt
ANKARATurkey has detained a senior aide to the U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen, who it accuses of being behind the failed military coup attempt of July 15, an official said on July 23.
Security forces detained Hails Hancı in the Black Sea province of Trabzon, the official said, describing Hancı as the “right-hand man” of Gülen and responsible for transferring funds to him.
The official said Hancı “apparently” entered the country two days before the attempted putsch that started late on July 15.
Gülen’s nephew, Muhammet Sait Gülen, has also been detained in the eastern province of Erzurum.
The province is thought to be home to a number of key Gulen supporters and members of his Hizmet movement, which the Turkish authorities say was behind the bloody attempted bid to oust President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the government.
The nephew was detained in connection with the coup, which Ankara says was organized by the “Fethullah Terrorist Organization” (FETÖ), state-run news agency Anadolu Agency reported.
The agency also said Muhammet Sait Gülen had been sought over the leak of questions from Turkey’s 2010 civil service exams.
In May this year, another nephew of the former imam in self-imposed exile was detained in connection with schools run by the movement, according to a state media report at the time.
In Erzincan, another eastern province, an investigation was launched on July 23 into 263 civil servants, while 45 people were arrested, Anadolu Agency reported.
Separately, the son-in-law of Akın Öztürk, a former air force chief already arrested as one of the key suspects, has been detained.
Lieutenant colonel Hakan Karakuş was detained in the capital Ankara, Anadolu Agency reported.
Police also detained a female Turkish fighter pilot, Kerime Kurmaş, in the province of Yalova south of Istanbul over alleged involvement in the coup, Dogan News Agency reported.
She is accused, along with two male pilots, of flying seized F-16 jets over Istanbul on the night of the coup. Other Turkish media reports have said she is the only female fighter pilot in Turkey.