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Turkey orders 'coup plot' arrests

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Turkey orders 'coup plot' arrests

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A Turkish court has ordered the arrest of 102 people charged with plotting to overthrow the government in 2003.

Footage on Friday night showed authorities rounding up some suspects following the indictment earlier this week.

Codenamed ‘‘Sledgehammer’‘, the alleged military coup is reported to have involved plans to blow up mosques and provoke tensions with Greece to spark political chaos.

For many of the accused, the latest ruling means re-arrest, including number one suspect Cetin Dogan, a former general and commander of Turkey’s first army.

Other suspected conspirators include ex-navy chief Ozden Ornek and former air-force commander and general Ibrahim Firtina.

Turkey’s armed forces have insisted ‘Operation Sledgehammer’ was merely a war games exercise presented at a seminar and have denied plotting to overthrow Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government.

The case is the latest in a long line of alleged conspiracies against Erdogan’s Islamist-rooted administration, which critics suspect has a secret agenda aimed at rolling back Turkey’s secular constitution.