20 Police Arrested in Turkey

20 Police Arrested in Turkey 20 Police Arrested in Turkey

Turkish police launched a new wave of operation targeting senior colleagues over claims of illegal wiretapping in the southern province of Mersin, and detained twenty of them on Tuesday.

Counterterrorism Units from the Mersin Police Department raided the homes and offices of some 20 police officers early in the day and detained them. The detainees reportedly include police chiefs who worked in the Intelligence Unit of the Mersin Police Department, according to Today’s Zaman.

Some 18 police officers were detained as part of a similar operation last week in Ankara. All of the police officers were released after being interrogated.

Dozens of police officers were targeted in similar operations in July and August.

The operations against the police, which prosecutors say were launched after allegations of spying and illegal wiretapping were made, are widely believed to be an act of government revenge for a corruption investigation that went public on Dec. 17, 2013.

The graft investigation resulted in the detentions of dozens of people, including businessmen close to the government, senior bureaucrats and the sons of three then-ministers.

The operations are also widely seen as targeting the faith-based Hizmet movement, which President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and government officials have described as a “parallel structure.” Erdogan accuses the movement of being behind a plot to oust him from government. The movement denies the accusation.