Turkey Sacks 18,500 Staff before Expected End of Coup Emergency

Some 18,632 people have been sacked including 8,998 police officers 3,077 army soldiers

According to the publication, 18 632 people were dismissed as a result of repression after the failed military coup two years ago, including 8998 police, 3 077 army, 1949 airmen and 1 126 naval forces.

8998 police officers are being dismissed, including 3077 lay-offs in the Army, 1126 in the Navy, 1949 in the Air Force and 192 in the Coast Guard.

The move comes before Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday is sworn in as president following re-election in June and prior to lifting a state of emergency in place since summer 2016.

Human rights defenders including Amnesty International have lambasted the purges as arbitrary but Turkey says they are necessary to remove the Gulen movement's infiltration of state bodies.

The Turkish government issued the latest emergency decree No: 701 earlier on Sunday amid days of expectations after Prime Minister Binali Yildirim signaled a large wave of dismissals on Friday.

Turkey has been under a state of emergency since shortly after the July 2016 coup attempt.

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The latest period is officially due to end on July 19.

While majority were detained for a long period of time, nearly half of them were charged for having alleged links to exiled Turkish preacher Fethullah Gulen, whom the government accused of being the architect behind the coup. The majority of those fired under the emergency are accused of links to Gulen.

Since the coup attempt, some 50,000 people, including dozens of journalists, were arrested in a massive crackdown on alleged Gulen supporters.

The decree also said 148 employees who were dismissed in the past had been reinstated.

Besides, the decree ordered shut down of 12 public organizations, three newspapers, and a TV channel.

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