Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Gulen’s Hizmet Service Runs a $150 Capital, Touches a 100 States | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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U.S. based cleric Fethullah Gulen at his home in Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania, U.S. July 29, 2016. REUTERS/Charles Mostoller

Turkey’s recent purge, post the 15 July failed coup attempt had targeted what it calls a ‘parallel state.’ In the intense aftermath of the putsch, the responsive crackdown chiefly affected Hizmet-affiliated parts of the educational sector.

Hizmet, or Hizmet Service, is another name which belongs to the Gulen-led parallel state.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has used the term “parallel state” (or “parallel structure”) to describe followers of Fethullah Gulen who occupy senior bureaucratic and judicial positions, which have been accused of attempting to bring down Erdogan’s government.

Expert on Turkish affairs, Dr. Saeed Al Haj recently revealed that the Gulen group enjoys an estimated capital of $150, and suffers no lack of funding.

The parallel state not only benefits from a series of bank and companies that invest into its agenda, but also has its own media empire which sponsors its propaganda.

Gulen’s radius of influence accounts to a thousand schools in Turkey alone and over a couple thousand academic institutions across 100 countries. His establishments are known to take in overly qualified and excelling students, granting academic scholarships to under privileged students.

Gulen, a 75-year-old cleric living in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania, is directly accused of orchestrating the recent putsch.