At least four people were detained while on way to escape a post-coup crackdown in Turkey to Greece, state-run Anadolu news agency reported Friday.

Police and gendarmerie officials caught a group of people near Çetibeli neighborhood in Marmaris, a resort town in Turkey’s western shores.

The suspects consist of three alleged smugglers and four others who are accused of links to the Gulen movement.

The group was on its way to illegal departure to a Greek island, Anadolu said.

Among the detainees are a 43-year-old teacher and a 37-year-old hospital worker who were earlier dismissed from their jobs over Gulen links.

The teacher also spent some time behind bars over ties to the movement before being released on judicial control, according to Anadolu.

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, 2016. The government accuses the movement of masterminding the coup, while the latter denies any involvement.

Some 150,000 have lost their jobs, more than 126,000 have been detained and some 56,000 including academics, judges, doctors, teachers, lawyers, students policemen and others have been put in pre-trial detention since summer 2016.

Many have tried to exit Turkey illegally since the government has revoked thousands of passports.

Related News