Following almost two solid months of extradition requests, Turkey has now formally requested that the US immediately arrest exiled cleric Fethullah Gulen for “ordering and commanding the attempted coup” back in July. The US has yet to respond.
Turkey’s previous extradition demands, despite Turkish officials couching them as being a reaction to the coup, did not include any evidence of Gulen’s involvement in the coup, and rather centered on allegations of crimes he’d committed in the years before the coup.
Turkey’s ruling AKP Party warned that the failure to hand over the cleric for extradition was “unacceptable,” with deputy party chief Yasin Aktay saying he found it “bizarre” the US hadn’t done the extradition, claiming to have provided them with massive amounts of evidence.
While they haven’t provided much detail, US officials have suggested that very little actual evidence was present in Turkey’s previous paperwork, which mostly just centered on accusations. President Obama has, however, promised to help Turkey catch everyone involved in the coup, and has sent investigators to Turkey to try to find evidence against Gulen that would warrant extraditing him.