Detention warrants have been issued for at least 110 people on accusations that they use a smart phone application known as ByLock, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported on Wednesday.
According to the report, as of late Wednesday, 30 of 59 suspects sought by the Istanbul Public Prosecutor’s Office and 43 of 51 people sought by the İzmir Public Prosecutor’s Office have been detained by police.
Turkish authorities believe that ByLock is a communication tool among Gülenists. The gülen group is accused by the Turkish government of masterminding a coup attempt last year. The claim is denied by the members of the group.
Tens of thousands of people, including civil servants, police officers, soldiers, businessmen and homemakers, have either been dismissed or arrested for using ByLock since a failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016.
The Guardian reported on a study commissioned by opponents of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan which argues that the arrest of 75,000 suspects primarily because they downloaded the ByLock app was arbitrary and illegal.
“The evidence that the [ByLock] app was used exclusively by those who were members or supporters of the Gülen movement [is] utterly unconvincing and unsupported by any evidence,” the two barristers conducting the study said, according to the Guardian.”