The 2019 Country Terrorism Report, published annually by the US Department of Foreign Affairs, emphasized that the statement Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan: “terrorist organization” used for the Hizmet Movement, which he was trying to put into effect, was incorrect.
The report states that after an attempted coup in July 15, 2016, the Turkish government called the exiled Fethullah Gulen’s movement, “Fethullah Terrorist Organization” (“FETO”). The emphasis is made on the fact that FETO is not a specific terrorist organization in the United States.
Besides, the report states that after the coup attempt, the Turkish government continues to detain and arrest Turkish citizens, as well as foreign citizens residing in Turkey, including US citizens and field staff at the US Mission in Turkey, for alleged FETO links and links with terrorism, often based on scant evidence.
The relevant part of the report says that the government, the Justice and Development Party (abbreviated officially AKP) (Turkey) also regularly sought to extradite Turkish citizens living abroad on terrorism charges in order to prosecute their homes for alleged links with FETO.
In 2019 the government also continued to dismiss the military, members of the security services and civil servants.
The report claims that after a failed coup attempt in 2016, the government dismissed or suspended more than 130,000 civil servants and military personnel from government posts, arrested or imprisoned more than 80,000 citizens, and closed more than 1,500 non-governmental organizations for alleged links with FETO.
In the aftermath of the July 2016 coup attempt, the Turkish government labeled the movement of self-exiled Fethullah Gulen as the “Fethullah Terrorist Organization” (“FETO”). “FETO” is not a designated terrorist organization in the United States. The government continued to detain and arrest Turkish citizens, as well as foreign citizens resident in Turkey – including U.S. citizens and locally employed staff at the U.S. Mission to Turkey – for alleged “FETO” or terrorism-related links, often on the basis of scant evidence and minimal due process. The government also regularly sought to extradite Turkish citizens resident abroad on terrorism related charges to prosecute them at home for alleged links to “FETO.” The government also continued to dismiss military, security, and civil servants from public office in 2019. Since the 2016 failed coup attempt, the government has dismissed or suspended more than 130,000 civil servants and members of the armed forces from public office, arrested or imprisoned more than 80,000 citizens, and closed more than 1,500 NGOs for alleged “FETO” links.
The 2019 Country Reports on Terrorism highlight significant terrorist trends and take stock of U.S. and international efforts to counter terrorist threats. The annual reports help the U.S. make informed judgments about our policies and resources. https://t.co/Mk3QLkcpPA. pic.twitter.com/c9RXyEYDVn
— Morgan Ortagus (@statedeptspox) June 24, 2020
Today, the Department released its annual Country Reports on Terrorism. The reports note that the U.S. and its partners made major strides to defeat and degrade international terrorist organizations in 2019. Read more here: https://t.co/8zp8ZabXxB pic.twitter.com/jyyFN79ZOO
— Department of State (@StateDept) June 24, 2020