TURKEY

Over 45 FETO-linked terror suspects arrested in Turkey

OVER 45 FETO-LINKED TERROR SUSPECTS ARRESTED IN TURKEY

Police on Wednesday arrested 46 people, including former police officials, across Turkey for their suspected links to the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), a security source said.

As many as twenty suspects were arrested in Istanbul where security forces carried out simultaneous raids in the city, said the source, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on talking to the media.

The suspects were accused of having deposited money at the FETO-affiliated Bank Asya upon orders from the terrorist group.

An Istanbul court declared the lender bankrupt last November. Bank Asya's banking license was cancelled on July 22, 2016 -- seven days after the defeated coup -- by Turkey's Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency.

The banking watchdog had ruled for complete takeover of all shares of Bank Asya by the state-run Insurance Fund in May 2015.

In a separate operation in southern Antalya province, 10 suspects were arrested for using the smartphone messaging app, ByLock.

ByLock is an encrypted mobile phone application used by FETO members to communicate during and after the 2016 defeated coup.

A total of nine people were arrested over several charges, including use of ByLock app, as part of a probe launched by Chief Public Prosecutor's Office in central Kayseri province.

In central Eskisehir province, four suspects, of whom arrest warrants were already issued in different provinces, were arrested.

In western provinces Aydin and Balikesir, two former soldiers and the wife of one of the soldiers were arrested.

FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup attempt of July 15, 2016, which left 250 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.

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