Ahmet Akdoğan, 72-year-old Turkish citizen, has been given a prison sentence of nine years over his alleged links to the Gülen movement, which Turkish authorities accuse of being behind a failed coup attempt in July 2016.
Akdoğan was arrested by an Uşak court soon after the failed coup and was sent to a prison in İzmir’s Ödemiş district. Since then he has been kept in solitary confinement, where he has suffered several heart spasms.
Akdoğan is accused of “being a relative of US-based scholar Fethullah Gülen and being affiliated with the Gülen movement.”
Turkey experienced a military coup attempt on July 15 that killed over 240 people and wounded more than a thousand others. Immediately after the putsch, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen movement.
The movement denies any involvement. However, the Turkish gov’t initiated a widespread purge aimed at cleansing sympathizers of the movement from within state institutions, dehumanizing its popular figures and putting them in custody.
In the currently ongoing post-coup purge, over 135,000 people, including thousands within the military, have been purged due to their real or alleged connection to the Gülen movement, according to a statement by the labor minister on Jan. 10. As of March 1, 93,248 people were being held without charge, with an additional 46,274 in pre-trial detention.
A total of 7,316 academics were dismissed, and 4,070 judges and prosecutors were purged over alleged coup involvement or terrorist links.