Erdoğan's post coup attempt purge hits 50,000

Access to the comments Comments
By Christopher Cummins  with Agencies
Erdoğan's post coup attempt purge hits 50,000

The evisceration of elements of Turkish society continues unabated following last Friday’s failed coup attempt.

The numbers of those either detained, suspended from their jobs or sacked has reached 50,000.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is turning the screws: “At every level of government, the period of cleansing this virus will continue. Because this body, my brothers, is infected with a cancer that spreads all around the government.”

The cure began with a purge of those believed to be directly involved, the military.

Soldiers, many of them teenage conscripts, were rounded up, beaten, stripped and according to reports, lynched.

The numbers are staggering with over 6,000 soldiers in custody.

More than are 9,000 individuals are involved in legal proceedings, close to a thousand civilians arrested and 85 top ranking officers from the army and navy jailed.

Thousands of teachers have had their licenses revoked and mass suspensions of civil servants across the education sector imposed.

The judiciary has been at the sharp end of Erdoğan’s justice 2,745 judges have been suspended accused of being part of the ‘parallel structure’ of the opposition Hizmet movement of Fethullah Gulen.

Centres of learning are under attack 1,577 university deans have been ordered to tender their resignations and academics banned from leaving the country and those abroad ordered to return.

Suspensions cut across the family and social affairs ministry, the finance ministry, the prime ministers office, the intelligence services and religious affairs.

Two top level presidential aides have also been suspended.

The media has long been a target of Erdoğan’s AKP party last March the influential newspaper Zaman was raided.

Following the coup attempt 24 TV and radio stations accused of links to Gulen have been stripped of their licenses.

The crackdown is aimed at Fethullah Gulen a former ally and friend of Erdoğan.

Gulen supported the rise of the AKP against secularist rivals.

Once the AKP had defeated the old order, around 2010, cracks began to appear in the relationship between the AKP and the Gulen movement.

Gulen is simply public enemy n°1 and Erdoğan wants him extradited from the United States and the Turkish president has addressed the matter with President Obama in a phone call on Tuesday.

Erdoğan’s remarks that the death penalty could be reinstated has shocked Europe and moves to do so will finally end Turkey’s bid to join the bloc.

In the meantime Erdoğan will continue to administer his treatment.