Ukraine-based propagandist latest to be nabbed in global FETÖ manhunt

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ISTANBUL
Published 16.07.2018 21:28
Updated 16.07.2018 21:29

Yusuf İnan, a suspected member of the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ), which is blamed for the 2016 coup attempt, was nabbed in Ukraine where he resided. İnan is accused of running online propaganda for the group, and his name is now added to a growing list of FETÖ suspects captured by Turkish security forces in an international manhunt against the group. Turkey has brought at least 80 suspected FETÖ members from abroad to justice since the coup attempt was foiled.

A social media expert, İnan was behind pro-FETÖ propaganda via several websites he ran. In the aftermath of the July 15, 2016 coup attempt that killed 250 people, he fled to Ukraine where he ran a software company. Security sources say he was behind a number of news articles praising FETÖ and spreading its veiled instructions to the terrorist group's members through online articles he penned. He was also a writer for a dream interpretation website catering to FETÖ members. The terrorist group that started out as a cult is known for motivating its members by disseminating messages about the dreams of its leader Fetullah Gülen, who calls jailed followers to be patient, claiming God or Prophet Muhammad told him that his followers would be "freed."

The most senior members of the group are still wanted since the coup attempt, and Turkish officials has carried out a series of arduous operations to nab and bring Gülen-linked people back to Turkey for prosecution. Turkey monitors the activities of Gülenists in 160 countries. Through a focused inquiry in cooperation with intelligence services, the Foreign Ministry found 4,600 suspected members of the group in 110 countries, and until now more than 80 coup plotters from 18 countries have been brought back in a global manhunt. Kosovo was among those that performed a joint operation with Turkish intelligence services, extraditing six Gülenist executives in March, lowering the terrorist group's capabilities in the Balkan region. This was followed by three high-ranking FETÖ members with outstanding arrest warrants brought to Turkey from Gabon in April. A recent example of a significant blow to the group occurred last week when two senior figures were captured and brought to Turkey from Azerbaijan and Ukraine.

Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said in a televised interview on Sunday that Turkey has been "watching these traitors" for two years and has brought this group's leading figures to Turkey. "Some of these [actions] were covered by the press and others were not, at the request of some countries," Çavuşoğlu told CNN Türk.

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