Student dormitory seized over Gülen links now used as ultranationalist Grey Wolves headquarters in Ankara

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A student dormitory seized over alleged affiliation with the faith-based Gülen movement after a coup attempt in Turkey in 2016 was given to the ultranationalist Grey Wolves to be used as their headquarters in Ankara, the Bold Medya news website reported.

According to local media, the Grey Wolves moved into its new headquarters in 2019.

The Ülkü Ocakları (Idealist Hearths), a Turkish ultranationalist youth and street movement largely affiliated with the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), became known as the Grey Wolves in the 1960s. Today the MHP is an ally of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). The Grey Wolves and the MHP were both founded by Alparslan Türkeş.

France banned the Grey Wolves in 2020, accusing the group of extremely violent actions and threats.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been targeting followers of the Gülen movement, inspired by Turkish Muslim cleric Fethullah Gülen, since the corruption investigations of December 17-25, 2013, which implicated then-prime minister Erdoğan, his family members and his inner circle.

Dismissing the investigations as a Gülenist coup and conspiracy against his government, Erdoğan designated the movement as a terrorist organization and began to target its members. He intensified the crackdown on the movement following an abortive putsch that he accused Gülen of masterminding. Gülen and the movement strongly deny involvement in the coup attempt or any terrorist activity.

According to Turkey’s Ministry of Education, the government has seized 848 student dormitories, which could accommodate 86,397 students, for affiliation with the Gülen movement, accused by Ankara of orchestrating the 2016 abortive putsch, although it strongly denies any involvement.

The government handed 769 of them over to foundations and associations, according to the ministry.

The government also seized schools, universities, media outlets, companies and buildings and the assets of individuals, corporations and organizations that were believed to have ties to the movement since the coup attempt.

No figures are available verifying how much personal wealth and how many assets have been seized by Erdoğan’s government during the massive post-coup purge that is still ongoing in Turkey.

Source:Stockholm Center for Freedom (SCF)

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