Germany is not convinced that US-based writer, political activist and former imam Fethullah Gulen was behind the failed July 15 coup in Turkey, the country’s intelligence chief said Saturday.
“Turkey has tried on different levels to convince us of that fact, but they have not succeeded,” Federal Intelligence Service (BND) President Bruno Kahl told Der Spiegel in an interview published March 18.
Kahl said that despite gathering information from a variety of sources, the BND could not find a direct link between what Turkey calls the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) and the coup attempt, the Daily Sabah reported. He also called Gulen’s organization merely a “civil association for religious and secular education.” Turkey classifies the group as a terrorist organization.
(Gulen’s supporters scoff at the “terrorist” name FETO and say their organization helps support schools, businesses and media and is simply called Hizmet, “service,” in Turkish.)