Turkey rounds up generals, judges after failed coup

Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, center right, Chief of Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar, center left, Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag, left, and Interior Minister Efkan Ala arrive for a press conference in Ankara, Turkey, Saturday, July 16, 2016. Forces loyal to Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan quashed a coup attempt in a night of explosions, air battles and gunfire that left dozens dead Saturday. Authorities arrested thousands of people as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed those responsible "will pay a heavy price for their treason." Photo: AP/PTI

Turkey’s Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, center right, Chief of Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar, center left, Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag, left, and Interior Minister Efkan Ala arrive for a press conference in Ankara, Turkey, Saturday, July 16, 2016. Forces loyal to Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan quashed a coup attempt in a night of explosions, air battles and gunfire that left dozens dead Saturday. Authorities arrested thousands of people as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed those responsible “will pay a heavy price for their treason.”
Photo: AP/PTI

Turkish authorities were on Sunday rounding up dozens of generals as well as senior judges and prosecutors accused of supporting a failed military coup aimed at ousting President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

The government has already said that almost 3,000 soldiers had been detained on suspicion of involvement in the putsch which began on Friday night but faltered already in the early hours of yesterday.

NTV television said that 34 generals of various grades had been detained so far. They include senior figures like Erdal Ozturk, commander of the third army and commander of the Malatya-based second army Adem Huduti.

The authorities have been carrying out raids at military bases across Turkey in search of those suspected of supporting the coup, which has claimed at least 265 lives.

In an operation early today, at the garrison in the western town of Denizli, its commander Ozhan Ozbakir was detained along with 51 other soldiers, the state-run Anatolia news agency said.

The crackdown is however not restricted to the military and Anadolu said that prosecutors have issued arrest warrants for a total of 2,745 judges and prosecutors across Turkey.

Ankara: A woman takes a selfie in front a damaged Turkish military APC that was attacked by protesters near the Turkish military headquarters in Ankara, Turkey, Saturday, July 16, 2016. Forces loyal to Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan quashed a coup attempt in a night of explosions, air battles and gunfire that left dozens dead Saturday. Authorities arrested thousands of people as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed those responsible "will pay a heavy price for their treason."  Photo: AP/PTI

Ankara: A woman takes a selfie in front a damaged Turkish military APC that was attacked by protesters near the Turkish military headquarters in Ankara, Turkey, Saturday, July 16, 2016. Photo: AP/PTI

It was not clear how many had been detained so far but the private Dogan news agency said 44 judges and prosectors were detained overnight in the city of Konya and 92 in the southeastern city of Gaziantep.

The entire investigation is being led by Ankara prosecutors and those arrested are suspected of belonging to the group of the US-based preacher Fethullah Gulen who Turkey accuses of masterminding the coup. Gulen denies the charges.

Turkey accuses Gulen of leading a group called the “Fethullahci Terror Organisation (FETO)” that has created a parallel state. Gulen’s supporters say their group which they call Hizmet (Service) is entirely peaceful.

US President Barack Obama had warned Turkey there is a “vital need” for all parties to “act within the rule of law” in the aftermath of the coup.