Turkey gives red card to 105 football referees as Erdogan sacks officials in coup clampdown

Turkey has sacked 105 referees as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan continues his crackdown in the wake of a failed coup.

The Turkish Football Federation said the action was taken as a ‘necessity’ while at least one assistant Super League referee was among those fired.

It comes two days after all members of the football federation’s affiliated boards resigned amid a wide-ranging state investigation into the July 15 coup.

The private Dogan news agency said no other top league referee was sacked.

More than 60,000 in the military, judiciary, civil service and education have been detained, suspended or placed under investigation in Turkey since the coup attempt.

The country has accused US-based Turkish opposition cleric Fethullah Gulen of being behind the coup but he denies any involvement and has condemned the failed putsch.

Gulen, who heads an international network of schools, charities and businesses, denies any knowledge of or participation in the coup.

Yesterday Erdogan once more blasted unnamed Western countries for what he said was support for the attempted coup that left more than 270 people dead.

‘The West is supporting terrorism and taking sides with coups,’ Erdogan said, adding that forces unhappy with Turkey’s rise as a regional power were behind the coup.

‘They have actors inside (Turkey) but the scenario of this coup was written abroad,’ he said during a speech at an event for foreign investors in Ankara.

Turkey’s government says the coup was instigated by Gulen, a former Erdogan ally now living in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania. Turkey has demanded his extradition, but Washington has asked for evidence of the cleric’s involvement.

Erdogan complained about the US request: ‘We did not request documents for terrorists that you wanted returned.’


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