Turkey Considers New Measures to Solidify Erdogan’s Authority


President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey held an emergency meeting with his national security team in Ankara on Wednesday.

Pool photo by Kayhan Ozer

ISTANBUL — Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, held an extraordinary national security meeting on Wednesday, and was expected to announce measures aimed at solidifying his authority after an attempt last week to topple his government.

Turkish officials declined to comment on the specific issues that were discussed at the national security meeting in the capital, Ankara, or what additional measures are being considered.

Turkish authorities have moved rapidly to purge state institutions of suspected followers of Fethullah Gulen, a Muslim cleric and rival of Mr. Erdogan who has been accused of orchestrating Friday’s coup plot.

On Wednesday, two members of Turkey’s constitutional court were arrested, and the defense ministry fired more than 200 military court judges and prosecutors. Turkey’s state-run news agency also reported that the education ministry was closing 626 private schools under investigation for “crimes against the constitutional order and the running of that order.”

The members of the constitutional court were among a group of more than 100 officials from the judiciary who were arrested on Wednesday. Nearly 60,000 soldiers, police officers, judges and civil servants have been suspended and detained across the country since last weekend, and about 1,000 members of the military have been accused of connections to the attempted coup.

The purges included the country’s education ministry on Tuesday, when more than 15,000 of its employees were suspended. On Wednesday, academics were banned from traveling abroad for work in an effort to prevent scholars and university teachers accused of participation in the coup plot from fleeing the country, Turkish officials said.

Mr. Gulen, a onetime ally of Mr. Erdogan who lives in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania, is believed to have inspired a vast network of educational institutions in Turkey and the United States, and is known to have many sympathizers in the police and judiciary in Turkey.

Also on Wednesday, the country’s internet watchdog blocked access to the WikiLeaks website after it published thousands of emails linked to the accounts of the governing Justice and Development Party.

A government official said the decision was made because the publishing of the emails was a violation of privacy and the data was illegally obtained.

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