Detention warrants out for 142 ministry staff over alleged Gülen links
The Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office has issued detention warrants for 121 personnel from the Education Ministry and 21 personnel the Youth and Sports Ministry on Oct. 3, as part of the probe into the Fetullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), accused of being behind the July 2016 coup attempt.
The suspects are accused of using the ByLock mobile messaging application, the users of which are suspected of being linked to the Gülen network.
The prosecutor’s office stated that the Ankara-based probe was being conducted throughout eight provinces’ public institutions and organizations.
Some 116 of the 121 Education Ministry staff had already been dismissed from their positions for using the ByLock app, said the statement.
So far, Ankara police have detained at least 82 suspects in operations in connection with the charges, state-run Anadolu Agency has reported.
Separately, the Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office issued detention warrants for 112 city municipality employees on Oct. 3 as part of another probe into FETÖ.
The suspects are former and active employees of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality and 18 district municipalities across the city, and are believed to have used the ByLock app.
So far at least 67 suspects have been detained in raids that followed the issuing of the warrants. Operations remain ongoing to apprehend the remaining suspects.
The ByLock smartphone app is believed to have been cracked by Turkish security agencies, allowing them to identify tens of thousands of suspected FETÖ supporters.