Turkey issues arrest warrant for ex-soccer star
Turkish authorities have issued a warrant for the arrest of former soccer star and legislator Hakan Sukur over his links to a US-based Muslim cleric, accused by Turkey of masterminding last month’s failed coup, media reports said on Friday.
Meanwhile, Turkey’s foreign minister told reporters that 32 Turkish diplomats who were called back to Turkey as part of an investigation into the coup attempt had failed to return. Turkey has launched a massive crackdown on alleged supporters of the movement led by Fethullah Gulen, in the aftermath of the July 15 coup attempt that left more than 270 people dead, raising concerns among European nations and human rights groups.
More than 35,000 people have been detained for questioning while tens of thousands of others from government jobs, including in the judiciary, media, education, health care, military and local government. Gulen, who runs a network of worldwide charities and schools from self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania, has denied any knowledge or involvement in the coup.
The state-run Anadolu Agency said an arrest warrant was issued for Sukur on Thursday, accusing him of “membership in an armed terror organization.” Prosecutors had also demanded the arrest of Sukur’s father, the report said. A court has also ordered that both men’s assets in Turkey be seized, Anadolu said.