By Ekber Turkoglu
TOKAT, Turkey (AA) - More than 20 suspects were arrested over links to Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), the group behind the 2016 defeated coup attempt, as part of nationwide counter-terror raids, police sources said Monday.
Police rounded up five suspects including dismissed judges, prosecutors and attorneys in the central Tokat province, according to a police source who spoke on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.
The operation came after Tokat Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office launched an investigation into FETO/PYD’s infiltration into the judiciary, the source added.
Separately, Adana Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office issued an arrest warrant for eight suspects for alleged links to FETO and using ByLock, an encrypted mobile phone messaging application used by coup plotters during and after the defeated coup attempt, the source added.
Also, in southern Adana province five suspects were arrested in various raids.
In another operation targeting FETO's school structure in northwestern Edirne province five suspects were arrested for alleged links to the terror group, a police source said.
Police also seized computers and documents belonging to the suspects during the raid.
As part of a probe into FETO/PYD’s military structure in northern Amasya province five suspects were arrested, a police source said.
Three suspects, including a non-commissioned officer, were also arrested in Mardin, Ankara, and Kirsehir provinces following an arrest warrant issued by Kirsehir Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, a police source said.
According to the Turkish government, FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup on 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.