Celal Uzunkaya, the head of Turkey’s Security General Directorate, has said 33,372 members of the police force of various ranks have been dismissed since a 2016 failed coup, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

Police departments have approximately 300,000 members nationwide, Uzunkaya said, adding that in the last three-and-a-half years they have recruited more than 80,000 policemen.

The dismissed police officers were believed to be affiliated with Turkey’s Gülen group, which the government holds responsible for the abortive putsch.

The group denies any involvement.

During a two-year-long state of emergency that ended last July, Turkey dismissed by government decree some 140,000 public servants over Gülen links.