Twenty-six people were detained in Turkey’s border province of Edirne while they were reportedly fleeing Turkish government’s post-coup witch-hunt to Greece.
Hurriyet newspaper said Saturday that a group of 26 rounded up were caught in six cars stopped by gendarmerie near Edirne’s Doyran village. The detainees former police officers, military students and teachers who were earlier dismissed from their posts over links to the Gulen movement. Among the group are also children who were later handed over to their relatives, according to other media outlets.
Thousands of people have fled Turkey due to a massive witch-hunt launched by the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government against sympathizers of the Gülen movement in the wake of a failed coup attempt on July 15. The government accuses the movement of masterminding the coup while the latter denies involvement.
More than 150,000 people have been detained and some 80,000 including academics, judges, doctors, teachers, lawyers, students, policemen and many from different backgrounds have been put in pre-trial detention since last summer.
Many tried to escape Turkey via illegal ways as the government cancelled their passports like thousands of others.
On Feb 13, at least three people died and five others were missing after a boat carrying a group of eight capsized in the Evros River while seeking to escape a post-coup crackdown in Turkey.