U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer and former CIA director John Brennan are two of 17 Americans that Turkey’s Government is investigating over their ties with Imam Fethullah Gulen.
The Daily Caller reported it Saturday and has more details.
The probe is the latest salvo in the Turkish government’s obsession with Gulen, who has lived in self-exile in Pennsylvania since 1999. Turkey’s authoritarian president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has accused Gulen of masterminding last summer’s failed coup attempt. He has labeled Gulen’s network of followers the Fethullah Terrorist Organization, or FETO, and wants the U.S. government to extradite the imam.
Turkish investigators are interested in Schumer because of donations he has received from Gulen’s supporters here in the U.S.
Another one targeted is Recep Ozkan, former president of the Turkish Cultural Center, who donated up to $1 million to the Clinton Foundation.
CNN reported last year that Gulen denied any involvement.
“As someone who suffered under multiple military coups during the past five decades, it is especially insulting to be accused of having any link to such an attempt. I categorically deny such accusations.”
And it is not the first time Gulen got criticized for starting a coup.
The Turkish government also accused Gulen’s supporters of spearheading an unsuccessful coup attempt in Turkey in January 2014.
Erdogan, a religious conservative, has compared Gulen and his supporters to a virus and a medieval cult of assassins.
In an interview with CNN at the time, a top official from Erdogan’s ruling AKP party called the Gulen movement a “fifth column” that had infiltrated the Turkish police force and judiciary.
Time will tell to see how this whole thing plays out.
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