Turkey fires 18500 state employees for alleged terror links

Turkey has been under a state of emergency since the July 2016 attempted overthrow of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

Under the decree, published on the Official Gazette early on Sunday, 18,632 civil servants, including almost 9,000 police officers, 6,000 members of the military and hundreds of teachers and academics were sacked.

Following the 2016 failed military coup attempt in Turkey, which some suspect was orchestrated by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to smoke out any and all of his opposition, the country dismissed over 100,000 people working in government sector - including law enforcement officials, academics, judges, doctors and teachers.

According to the report, in line with decree No. 701, 3077 members of the Turkish land forces, 8998 from the security general directorate, 240 from the directorate of religious affairs (Diyanet), 1052 from the ministry of justice and 1126 from the naval forces command were dismissed.

The decree also said 148 employees who were previously sacked had been reinstated.

Gülen, who Turkey has requested to be extradited from the US, is also accused of a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary, forming what is commonly known as the parallel state.

Turkey has been under a state of emergency for almost two years, declared after a failed coup attempt in July 2016.

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The emergency has been renewed seven times and the latest period is officially due to end on July 19.

They came less than two weeks before the expected lifting of emergency rule, which was imposed following the attempted coup on July 15, 2016.

More than 75,000 people have been arrested for alleged links to Gulen.

Gulen, who lives in self-imposed exile in the United States, has denied any involvement in the coup, in which more than 200 people were killed.

Tens of thousands of others have been fired or suspended in the vast purge.

One of the newspapers closed was the Kurdish-language daily Welat based in the southeastern province of Diyarbakir as well as the pro-Kurdish Ozgurlukcu Demokrasi whose Istanbul offices were raided by police in March.

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