Turkey’s Erdogan meets opposition as post-coup crackdown continues
Turquie Erdogan Opposition
Turkey’s government on Monday continued its crackdown on those suspected of supporting a failed coup last week as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan made overtures to the political opposition.
Turkey ordered the detention of 42 journalists on Monday, broadcaster NTV reported, as part of a sweeping purge that began immediately after the unsuccessful military coup of July 15.
The crackdown has already targeted more than 60,000 people, drawing fire from the European Union.
The arrests or suspensions of soldiers, police, judges and civil servants have raised concerns among rights groups and Western countries, who fear Erdogan is capitalising on the failed coup to consolidate his grip on power.
The well-known commentator and former parliamentarian Nazli Ilicack was among the 42 journalists subject to arrest warrants, NTV reported.
Meanwhile, the state-run Turkish Airlines said it had fired 211 employees, citing suspected links to US-based preacher Fethullah Gulen, whom Erdogan has blamed for the attempted putsch.
Turkish Airlines said their contracts were terminated due to “the non-fulfilment of performance criteria and in line with the necessary actions we are taking against the FETO structure”, an acronym used by Ankara for Gulen’s movement. Gulen has denied any involvement in the attempted coup.
Erdogan nevertheless made overtures to Turkey’s political opposition on Monday, inviting some of their leaders to meet with him in the presidential palace.