ISTANBUL – Turkish authorities issued warrants for the detention of 47 journalists on Wednesday, broadcaster CNN Turk said, the latest step in a widening crackdown following a failed military coup.
Police were set to detain the journalists as part of an investigation into U.S.-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, accused by Ankara of masterminding the July 15-16 coup attempt in which at least 246 people were killed, CNN Turk said.
The journalists worked for the Gulen-linked Zaman newspaper, which was seized by Turkish authorities in March as part of a clampdown on the preacher’s supporters.
Gulen, an ally-turned-foe of President Tayyip Erdogan who had built up an extensive network of schools, charities and businesses in Turkey over decades, has condemned the coup attempt and denies any involvement in it.
Police raided the home of one of the journalists, Sahin Alpay, around 6 a.m. (0300 GMT) on Wednesday and detained him after a 2½ hour search of the property in a central Istanbul district, the Dogan news agency reported.
Since the failed coup, Turkish authorities have suspended, detained or placed under investigation more than 60,000 soldiers, police, judges, teachers, civil servants and others.
On Monday media reported that Turkey had issued arrest warrants for the detention of 42 journalists, including well-known commentator and former parliamentarian Nazli Ilicak.
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