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Istanbul: Trker Yilmaz was not long into his police academy training when he realised how the system worked. The good jobs, the better pay, the promotion prospects all depended on your dedication to a shadowy Islamic network with its headquarters in Pennsylvania.
These appointments become more and more regular. They organise a few things to make it easier. Free meals for example, free accommodation. And once you graduate, you can start working in whichever unit you like. The power and the influence of the elderly US-based cleric is currently the defining issue of Turkish politics. Erdogan responded ferociously, purging the police of thousands of officers, transferring prosecutors associated with the investigation and tightening control over the judiciary.
A fortnight ago, according to senior officials in Brussels, he told EU leaders that his fight with Glen was a matter of political survival. But that was when Erdogan and Glen were allies. Yilmaz and other police officers who spoke up confirmed the scale and degree of penetration by adherents of a movement that is religious, cultural and educational as well as political. He sought transfers to other units: secret intelligence, anti-terror, organised crime.
To no avail. Gn was never affiliated with the Glenist movement. We had friends who spoke six languages, were top of their class, and were standing guard outside police stations. And others who were a lot less qualified got the top jobs only because they were connected with the Glenists.
The assumption in Turkey and abroad is that the corruption allegations against the Erdogan administration originate with Glen, and that they are likely to be well-founded because of the quality of the intelligence the movement commands.
Erdogan is seen to be trying not only to destroy the cleric but also to bury the corruption allegations. There is also a real witch hunt going on. We have massive corruption on the one hand, but the investigation against it also violates democratic and judicial principles.
One is not better, or cleaner, than the other. The officers welcomed the backlash against the network inside the police but stressed that it should not serve to legitimise corruption. I am not defending corruption at all. It was the government in the first place who enabled them, who helped them, they came to power together. Gn spoke a huge sense of relief among his colleagues that the police were being cleared of the network.
But they kept tabs on all of that, on everyone. Nobody talked about it. Everybody knew, but nobody dared to discuss the issue. This has started to change. Those who dared to criticise the Glen movement before were swiftly punished. He was released from jail in , but his trial is ongoing. In Hanefi Avc, a former police chief and former Glen supporter, was arrested on charges of being a member of a terrorist organisation after publishing a book in which he described the infiltration of the Turkish police force by the Glenists and accused them of illegally tapping phones and falsifying evidence.
Last year the self-described right wing sympathiser was sentenced to more than 15 years in jail for membership of the armed left wing Revolutionary Headquarters.
But the officers say such purges have been taking place more quietly for years. According to both Yilmaz and Gn, internal investigations have been conducted against tens of thousands of police officers over the past four years alone.
They just hit the other camp. Not all police officers, however, are as happy with the current purges. Do you have a detector? Where is justice? EU officials monitoring the drama say Erdogan is deploying an indiscriminate dragnet in the belief that it will net all the Glen appointments. Yilmaz agrees. And not all sympathisers were bad, either. And no police officer should ever be punished just for doing a good job.
Faruk Sezer, a founding member of the unofficial police union Emniyet-Sen, argued that a transparent investigation into the alleged shadow organisation was indispensable. But those who were transferred without reason and proof should of course be reinstated. Last month Istanbul prosecutors started an investigation into officers who took part in anticorruption raids in December.
Turkish riot police take cover as they fire water cannons and tear gas at hundreds of demonstrators who try to march to the city's main Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, Saturday, Feb.
Demonstrators hurled firecrackers and stones Saturday at police officers who cordoned off Taksim Square. Many also denounced a corruption scandal involving former Cabinet ministers and called on the government to resign. View gallery as list. Sign up for Coronavirus Newsletter. Latest local and global Coronavirus news directly to your inbox. More From Oceania.
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hanefi avci News
The European Court of Human Rights has today notified in writing a judgment 1 in the case of Buldan v. Turkey application no. The judgment is available only in English. The applicant, Nejdet Buldan, is a Turkish national of Kurdish origin, born in and living in Gelsenkirchen Germany. On 3 June at about 4.
Istanbul: Trker Yilmaz was not long into his police academy training when he realised how the system worked. The good jobs, the better pay, the promotion prospects all depended on your dedication to a shadowy Islamic network with its headquarters in Pennsylvania. These appointments become more and more regular. They organise a few things to make it easier. Free meals for example, free accommodation. And once you graduate, you can start working in whichever unit you like. The power and the influence of the elderly US-based cleric is currently the defining issue of Turkish politics.
Turkey's top court rules rights of jailed police chief Hanefi Avci breached
Prominent Turkish journalists on trial for alleged links to an underground anti-government network called the conspiracy charges against them "political" in a case that has raised concerns over media freedom in Turkey. Turkey is currently holding nearly members of the news media in jail, one of the highest numbers worldwide, in a crackdown that critics and human rights groups say blights the country's image as a role model for democracy in the Middle East. Looking thinner but defiant,? If found guilty the two face a maximum of 15 years in prison. Both have denied the charges and say the evidence against them was planted. Investigations into Ergenekon have spiralled since they first opened in , and critics accuse the government of scaremongering to silence opponents. The government denies any such motives.