Published: Wed, July 11, 2018
Worldwide | By Jermaine Blake

Mass staff purge in Turkey ahead of Erdogan swearing

Mass staff purge in Turkey ahead of Erdogan swearing

A few days before the end of the state of emergency in Turkey, with a decree published on Sunday in the Government Gazette, 18,632 people from the Turkish state were dismissed!

The government has defended the measures imposed under the state of emergency in place since July 2016, saying they were needed to eradicate the influence of Gulen from Turkish society.

With the declaration of new cabinet, the state of emergency that expires on July 19 should automatically be lifted, according to outgoing Prime Minister Binali Yildirim.

Human rights defenders including Amnesty International have criticized the purges as arbitrary.

In the aftermath of the failed 2016 coup, more than 55,000 people have been detained pending trial.

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The decree has also dismissed a certain number of employees of the Turkish Justice Ministry (1,051), the Education Ministry (658), the Directorate of Religious Affairs (240), the Foreign Ministry (38) and state universities (199).

The dismissals came the day before President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was to be sworn in for his second term, following his victory in last month's presidential election.

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

The government refers to the movement as the "Fethullah Terrorist Organization".

Gulen, who lives in self-imposed exile in the USA, has denied any involvement in the coup, in which more than 200 people were killed. At least three newspapers, a television channel and several associations also shut down.

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