Nobel laureate novelist Orhan Pamuk said Turkey has imprisoned so many innocent people in arbitrary ways very recently, leading him to feel guilty even when working.

In an interview with the US-based Slate magazine on Aug 18, Pamuk said: “As I tell my girlfriend, all the time one feels guilty when one is just happy with books and films and when one’s writing when so much horror is happening in one’s country. So many guiltless people put into prison in an arbitrary way.”

Over 120,000 people have been detained and some 55,000 were arrested over their real or alleged links to the Gülen movement, which the government accuses of masterminding the July 15, 2016 coup attempt. The movement denies involvement.

The post-coup crackdown targeted pro-Kurdish politicians and civilians, liberals, leftists and many other opposition groups as well.

“The government used the military coup to purge most of the liberals. Most of the people who criticized the government are pushed out of the government offices,” Pamuk added.

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