Turkey building more courts to deal with mass arrests of political foes
Justice minister Bekir Bozdag says they expect an answer soon on cleric Fethullah Gulen
Turkey has formally arrested 32,000 people in its investigation of a religious movement the government blames for staging a military coup attempt on July 15, Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said on Wednesday.
In a live interview with broadcaster NTV, Bozdag also said a total of about 70,000 people have faced legal proceedings on suspicion of links with U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom the government says engineered the failed coup.
Turkey deems the Gulen movement as a terrorist organisation.
U.S. officials have told their Turkish counterparts they will respond within a couple of days to Turkey's demand to arrest Gulen, Bozdag said.
Turkey wants the United States to extradite Gulen and prosecute him. Washington has said it is cooperating with Ankara on the matter and asked its NATO ally for patience as it processes the extradition request for Gulen to meet U.S. legal requirements.