A total of 1,213 Twitter and Facebook users have been arrested while 818 others were released pending trial on accusation of making propaganda on behalf of what the government calls FETÖ, since the July 15 coup attempt.
Investigation was launched into 10,200 suspects who were alleged to had been making propaganda for the Gülen movement after the failed coup, state-run Anadolu Agency said Thursday. With the 1,213 internet users jailed, 818 were released on probation.
The government accuses the movement of orchestrating the coup attempt and calls it as the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) with a reference to the US-based cleric Fethullah Gülen whom the movement inspired from.
More than 115,000 people have been purged from state bodies, nearly 80,000 detained and some 40,000 arrested since the coup attempt. Arrestees included journalists, judges, prosecutors, police and military officers, academics, governors and even a comedian. Critics argue that the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) has been capitalizing on the post-coup emergency rule to get rid of its critics.
A popular Twitter user posting under the name “JeansBiri” was arrested for starting a hashtag critical of AK Party, in late November.