Profiling of citizens has taken a new turn in Turkey with provincial branches of the Education Ministry asking its personnel to identify which newspapers and magazines they are subscribers.
“…Please have all personnel fill out the attached form as soon as possible,” read an official letter submitted by the District Director of National Education Fatih Burğut to all school principals in Manisa’s Gülnar district on August 19.
According to Samanyolu Haber news portal, the form asks personnel to identify which labor union, association or foundation they are member of; which newspaper, magazine and publication they subscribe to; if they enrolled their children to preparation schools; dormitories and colleges affiliated with the Gulen Movement; if they had an account –open or closed– at [the government seized] Bank Asya and if they had any social media account.
Turkey survived a military coup attempt on July 15 which killed some 240 people and wounded a thousand others. While the government accuses the Gülen movement of masterminding the putsch, the movement has repeatedly repudiated such claims, condemning any intervention into democratically-elected administrations.
More than 80,000 people have been purged from within public institutions while over 40,000 people have been detained over alleged links to the movement since July 15. Meanwhile, some 20,000 people were arrested, backing up claims that the government taps into the attempt in order to lock down dissidents working at state bodies.