Ankara moves to prevent Gülen’s ‘Turkish Olympics’ language competition
REUTERS photoFour Turkish ministries have moved to take measures to prevent the “Turkish Olympics” international language competition, as part of steps taken against activities of the U.S.-based preacher Fethullah Gülen abroad.
The interior, justice, finance and foreign ministries have put together a “six-step plan” targeting overseas activities of what the government calls the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), believed to be behind Turkey’s recent failed military coup attempt.
The Foreign Ministry is working through Turkish embassies and consulates to prevent festivals, competitions and cultural activities organized by the Gülen movement to be canceled, including the Turkish Olympics, which been held for the past 14 years. The aim is to prevent FETÖ from “conducting propaganda abroad,” pro-government daily Sabah reported.
Ankara also aims to get Gülen-linked schools and publications abroad shut down, sending formal requests to 140 countries where such schools operate on the grounds that they conduct the propaganda of a terrorist organization and recruiting people to it.
The Foreign Ministry stated that the attempted seizure of power in Turkey on the night of July 15 “shows that the movement constitutes a threat” for all countries that host Gülen-linked operations.
Turkey has also started to contact countries that host Gülen-linked publications, saying the movement aims to attract sympathizers through such “propaganda.”