US team to visit Ankara for FETÖ probe
A U.S. delegation will be visiting Ankara to hold talks with Turkish authorities on new evidence that they submitted to Washington about the FETÖ, the group that is widely believed to have orchestrated the failed coup attempt of 2016 in Turkey.
The talks scheduled for Jan. 3-4 are seen as important in terms of revealing the role of FETÖ’s U.S-based leader Fethullah Gülen and his inner circles.
Earlier, Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gül had said that Ankara was “hoping” for Gülen to be extradited to Turkey. “In Turkey, death penalty does not exist. We are saying [to U.S. officials] there is no obstacle for the extradition not to take place,” Gül had said on Dec. 30.
“Our demand [for Gülen’s extradition] is not officially rejected. As we find new evidence, we send it to America. Administrative and criminal investigations are ongoing,” Gül had also said.
Turkish authorities “proved” the role of FETÖ in the failed coup attempt by sharing digital data during a meeting with U.S. officials on July 13, 2018, state-run Anadolu Agency has said.
The U.S. also started to make its own assessment by receiving the data, the agency said.
The U.S.’s assessment on the new evidence will be learned during the talks to be attended by officials of Foreign, Interior and Justice Ministries in Ankara tomorrow and on Jan. 4, the agency said.
The U.S. officials will talk about the preliminary inquiry that they launched earlier into organized crimes, such as visa irregularities and money laundering by FETÖ-linked foundations and individuals, in 18 states.
Earlier, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu had said they took FBI’s probe into FETÖ “seriously,” but with suspicions. However, he added the probe seemed to have started bearing fruit.