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Turkey Premier Lashes Out Over Arrest of Allies

By   /   December 19, 2013  /   No Comments

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Turkey Premier Lashes Out Over Arrest

of Allies

Erdogan Calls Dawn Raids Part of Plot to Topple Government


ISTANBUL—Turkey’s prime minister said a graft probe that has snared dozens of his political allies was part of an internal plot to topple his government, and promised to retaliate against those responsible as a new round of elections nears.

Authorities on Tuesday detained 52 people, including the sons of three cabinet ministers, for questioning in a case involving charges of bribery and zoning-law violations.

In his first direct response, Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan characterized the arrests as part of a criminal conspiracy involving the higher echelons of the bureaucracy, which he accused of misconduct and abuse of power.

…The premier didn’t identify the alleged masterminds, but his comments signaled a deepening conflict within the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP.

After a decade in power, the Islamist-rooted party has become increasingly split between supporters of the premier and a faction loyal to a U.S.-based cleric, Fethullah Gulen…

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