Turkish banking regulators on Tuesday (February 3) seized control of Islamic lender Bank Asya, citing insufficient transparency to allow for proper regulation, after the bank suffered losses from the fallout of a political power struggle.
President Tayyip Erdogan last year called on banking regulators to take action against the Istanbul-based bank, whose founders sympathise with the US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, after it saw a run on its deposits.
Depositors, including state-owned firms and institutions, last year withdrew 4 billion lira ($1.7 billion), or some 20 percent of Bank Asya's total deposits, according to media reports, after Erdogan accused his erstwhile ally Gulen of plotting to overthrow him.
The Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) said in a statement on its website it had taken over management of the bank and appointed a new board of directors.
"Because the institution has not presented a partnership structure that is transparent and open enough to allow for effective regulation ... partnership rights have been given to the Savings Deposit Insurance Fund," the BDDK said in a statement on its website.
News channels including CNN Turk said the BDDK had seized a 63 percent stake in the bank.
Erdogan has repeatedly pledged to purge the police and judiciary of Gulen's supporters and says they pose a threat to national security.
Police thought to be close to Gulen's network in late 2013 leaked an investigation into high-level corruption that implicated members of then-prime minister Erdogan's family and his cabinet.