A total of 16,540 military members have been dismissed from duty since July 15, 2016 over alleged ties to the Gülen movement, which is accused of orchestrating a coup attempt in 2016.

Speaking to NTV on Friday, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said that the Turkish government is continuing its fight against soldiers that are “affiliated with FETÖ,” a derogatory term coined by ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) to refer to the movement.

Akar revealed that in the past ten months, a total of 1,496 military members have been dismissed from duty over alleged ties to the movement.

Additionally, 879 members of the land forces, 242 from the naval forces and 375 from the air forces were suspended by the Turkish Defense Ministry during the same period.

Additionally, some 150 retired officers have been deprived of their rank and benefits on allegations of Gülen links.

Although the movement denies any involvement with the abortive putsch, the Turkish government launched a massive post-coup crackdown targeting followers and sympathizers of the movement.