Deres brøde? Å ha etterforsket og arrestert 51 maktpersoner med forbindelser til statsministeren.
The police chief of Istanbul, Turkey’s largest city, has been removed from his post two days after a high-level corruption crackdown on business and government circles that includes the sons of three cabinet ministers.
The government started to make comprehensive changes to the Turkish police force on Wednesday in a move widely perceived as Ankara’s response to the corruption investigation, which Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan says is a «dirty operation» to smear his administration and undermine the country’s progress.
Turkish media reports said that tens of high-level police commissioners have been sacked following the raids related to the probe that led to detention of at least 51 people. Nine of the detained were released late on Wednesday.
Those detained in relation to the investigation on Tuesday included the sons of Interior Minister Muammer Guler, Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan and Environment Minister Erdogan Bayraktar.
Various well-known businessmen and bureaucrats were also detained including Suleyman Aslan, the chief executive of Turkish state bank Halkbank, Mustafa Demirand, the mayor of Istanbul district Faith, and Ali Agaoglu, a renowned construction tycoon.
The suspects are accused of accepting and facilitating bribes to secure construction permits for protected areas, the Turkish media reported. Some reports on Wednesday also said that $4.5m had been seized at Aslan’s house.