Turkey detains 85 military personnel over Gulen ties

Turkish solders stay with weapons at Taksim square as people protest against the military coup in Istanbul in this July 16, 2016 photo. (AFP)
Updated 21 September 2018
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Turkey detains 85 military personnel over Gulen ties

  • Prosecutors in Ankara issued arrest warrants for 110 active duty personnel in the air force
  • Western allies have expressed concern over the scale of the crackdown

ANKARA: Turkish police on Friday detained 85 military personnel in countrywide raids over alleged links to the group blamed for the 2016 failed coup, state media reported.
Prosecutors in Ankara issued arrest warrants for 110 active duty personnel in the air force, state-run news agency Anadolu said, as part of a probe into followers of US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen.
Police launched operations in 16 provinces including Ankara while those detained in other cities would be taken to the Turkish capital.
Five of those sought by police were pilots while three were colonels, the agency added.
Turkey claims Gulen ordered the attempted overthrow of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on July 15, 2016 but he strongly denies the charges.
Over 77,000 people including military personnel, teachers and judges have been arrested over suspected links to Gulen under the two-year state of emergency imposed five days after the coup bid. The government ended the emergency this July.
Western allies have expressed concern over the scale of the crackdown which saw over 140,000 people suspended or sacked from the public sector.
In the face of stringent criticism, Ankara has insisted the raids are necessary to remove the “virus” that is the Gulen movement’s infiltration of key Turkish institutions.
Gulen, who has lived in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania since 1999, denies this and insists his movement is peaceful, and promotes moderate Islam and secular education.


Rocket fired on Israel from Gaza: Israeli army

Palestinian protesters run for cover from teargas fired by Israeli troops during a protest on the beach at the border with Israel near Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, on Monday, Oct. 15, 2018. (AP)
Updated 32 min 19 sec ago
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Rocket fired on Israel from Gaza: Israeli army

  • It is one of the first rockets fired in recent weeks from the Palestinian territory under Israel’s blockade

JERUSALEM: A rocket was fired on Israel from the Gaza strip early Wednesday, the Israeli army and police said, causing damage in a southern city.
“At 4:00 AM (0100 GMT) Israelis in the city of Be’er Sheva were running to bomb shelters after a rocket was launched from the Gaza Strip at Israel,” the Israeli army tweeted.
“We will defend Israeli civilians,” it added, suggesting there would be a military response.
It is one of the first rockets fired in recent weeks from the Palestinian territory under Israel’s blockade and comes at a time of renewed tensions between Israel and Palestinian armed groups.
“A rocket struck the city of Be’er Sheva a few moments ago causing damage,” the Israeli police said, without specifying the extent of the damage.
There were no reports of injuries.