A report by counterterrorism police illustrates how the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) controlled its infiltrators in the military and was behind the surveillance of military officers not aligned with the group.
FETÖ is blamed for employing its infiltrators in the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) for the July 15, 2016 coup attempt that killed 251 people. Tens of thousands of people were detained or arrested following the putsch bid and investigations focus on its secret network of infiltrators in all branches of the army.
Investigations now focus on how the terrorist group contacted its infiltrators prior to the coup attempt and most point to pay phone traffic between handlers of infiltrators and military officers following the orders of FETÖ leaders instead of their superiors in the army.
Counterterrorism police reports based on multiple investigations show that the terrorist group banned its infiltrators from using cellphones for communications after December 2013. FETÖ had tried to overthrow the government in two coup attempts in 2013 and faced increased scrutiny after that.
The report shows that military infiltrators were employed to monitor anyone, from fellow infiltrators to any officer the terrorist group viewed as an obstacle, in their ultimate purpose of entirely taking over the army. Infiltrators also went as far as carrying hidden cameras planted on their uniforms and if they were dressed as civilians, on their ties and used cameras to record activities in military bases.
Infiltrators instructed by their handlers commonly described as "imams" served as intelligence staff for FETÖ in the army and obtained information about fellow officers. The terrorist group had a database of military officers with plenty of data on them, ranging from family backgrounds to their ideology, weaknesses, personality, and ethnic and religious backgrounds, the police report says.