At least 32,000 people have been arrested in Turkey since a failed military coup occurred in July, the justice minister has said. Bekir Bozdag explained in a live interview with private broadcaster NTV that 70,000 people have been processed and 32,000 people formally arrested, AP reported.
The Turkish government alleged US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen was behind the 15 July failed coup, which resulted in the death of at least 270 people.
The failed attempt to overthrow the Turkish government was followed by a crackdown on suspected Gulen's supporters in the country.
At least 60,000 of his supporters have been suspended, fired or arrested since July.
In August, Turkey submitted a request to the US government to extradite Gulen, who has denied any involvement in the coup.
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan called on the US government to either arrest or extradite Gulen, whom he defined as the leader of a terrorist organisation.
During a speech delivered during the UN General Assembly, Erdoğan said: "I am calling, from this podium, to all our friends, to swiftly take the necessary measures against the Gulenist terrorist organisation for their own safety and the future of their nations. It is evident from our experience that if you do not fight the Gulen network at this stage, it may be too late later."
Gulen and Turkey relations
The Gulen movement – an Islamic religious and social organisation known as Hizmet – has private schools and universities in more than 180 countries. It was originally on good terms with Erdoğan's Justice and Development Party (AKP) party, as both groups advocate a moderate version of Islam.
However, AKP later labelled Hizmet as a terrorist organisation and accused its members of trying to infiltrate the state to overthrow the government. Gulan has been leading Hizmet from the US, where he is on a self-imposed exile.