Turkey suspends another 2,000 education staff for alleged links to failed coup

December 21, 2016 18:25

ANKARA - Turkey suspended nearly 2,000 teachers and school employees on Wednesday, an official from the Ministry of Education said, as part of the widening purge that has followed a failed coup in July.

More than 125,000 people have been dismissed from the police, the military, the judiciary, the civil service or the education system, and almost 40,000 arrested, for alleged connections with the coup attempt, during which at least 240 people were killed.The official told Reuters that 1,980 teachers and school employees had been suspended pending investigation. No other information was immediately available.

Turkey says followers of the U.S.-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen have infiltrated state institutions and plotted to overthrow the government. On Wednesday, President Tayyip Erdogan said that the 22-year-old police officer who assassinated Russia's ambassador in Ankara this week was also one of Gulen's followers.

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