Istanbul’s police chief has been sacked in the aftermath of mass arrests on Tuesday by officers investigating corruption claims, reports say.
Huseyin Capkin’s dismissal comes a day after several senior officers, including his deputies, were removed.
Some 52 people, including three sons of ministers, were arrested in the dawn raids which prompted the dismissals.
Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has denounced the inquiry as a “dirty operation” against his government.
In the absence of obvious explanations, there are speculations:
Many believe the arrests and firings reflect a feud within Turkey’s ruling AK Party between those who back Mr Erdoğan, and supporters of Fethullah Gülen, an influential Islamic scholar living in self-imposed exile in the US.
Members of Mr Gülen’s Hizmet movement are said to hold influential positions in institutions such as the police, the judiciary and the AK Party itself.
“Hizmet” — “service to the common good” — would seem at least slightly incompatible with Islam as we know it, but I admit to having read very little of Gülen’s work.
Meanwhile, where there is turmoil, there are jokes:
Joke on Turkish Twitter is that Turkey produces enough crises in one day to last a regular Scandanivian country, oh, a decade or so.
— Zeynep Tufekci (@zeynep) December 19, 2013
“How Turkey has regressed,” says Jerry at Commonsense & Wonder.