World

ANKARA (Web Desk) – Turkish authorities on Tuesday suspended some 12,800 police officers from duty over their suspected links to U.S based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen whom they consider the mastermind behind botched coup on July15.

In a brief statement posted on its website, the Turkish police headquarters said those suspended were allegedly “in cohesion with or connected to” Gulen’s movement. It said 2,523 of them were police chiefs.

The move came a day after the cabinet extended the duration of emergency in the state for another three months.

Tens of thousands of people have been dismissed or suspended from government jobs including in the military, police, judiciary and the education ministry on their suspected role behind coup bid. Around 32,000 people allegedly connected to the failed takeover attempt have been arrested, including dozens of journalists employed by Gulen-linked news outlets.

Authorities have closed schools, charities, foundations and even medical establishments associated to the movement and also appointed trustees to manage Gulen-linked businesses.

Turkey’s main opposition party and human rights groups have accused the government of using emergency powers to clamp down on all dissenting voices — not just the Gulen movement.

Turkey also urged its international allies to close down the network of schools run under Gulen movement. A large-scale staff relocation was also observed in Pakistan based Pak-Turk schools.