According to a news report [Reuters report] on Sunday, Turkey’s government has dismissed 10,000 additional civil servants and closed 15 more media outlets for their supposed connection with US-based religious leader Fethullah Gulen, who Turkey has accused of orchestrating the attempted coup in July. These most recent sacks mean that over 100,000 people have been fired or suspended and 37,000 in the country’s crackdown on terrorism. The somewhat extreme crackdown has been criticized by many within the state as opposition parties have called President Erdogan’s use of emergency rule a “direct coup against rule of law and democracy.” Also, many human rights groups and some of Turkey’s Western allies have bemoaned [JURIST report] Erdogan’s policies as having weakened human rights safeguards. In addition to the firings and media shutdown, universities may no longer select their own heads, as Erdogan will now directly appoint candidates nominated by the High Educational Board (YOK).
The aftermath of the failed coup attempt continues as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed [JURIST report] that those involved in the coup would “pay a heavy price.” Last month Turkish Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said that approximately 32,000 people have been arrested [JURIST report] in relation to the recent coup attempt, and 70,000 have been questioned. In August a group of human rights experts for the UN called upon [JURIST report] Turkey’s government to uphold its international human rights obligations, despite declared emergency following failed coup. Also in August an Istanbul court issued an arrest warrant [JURIST report] for Gullen on charges of orchestrating the attempted coup. Earlier in August Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland traveled [JURIST report] toTurkey to meet with a variety of Turkish officials to urge for respect for the rule of law. In July Amnesty International condemned [JURIST report] Turkey’s decision to issue arrest warrants for 42 journalists. Also in July Erdogan ordered [JURIST report] the closure of thousands of private schools, charities and other institutions.