ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkey’s state-run Turkish Airlines fired more than 100 employees, including management and cabin crew, as part of a purge at state institutions to root out supporters of an abortive coup, Turkish media reported on Monday.
The dismissals at the national carrier occurred late on Sunday after it was determined the employees were linked to a religious movement President Tayyip Erdogan has said attempted to overthrow the government on July 15, Sabah newspaper said.
An official at Turkish Airlines, Europe’s fourth-biggest carrier, declined to comment.
Other reports said the dismissals were due to “inefficiency.” Thelira.com, a financial-news website, said about 250 cabin crew were dismissed, along with 100 management and administrative staff.
Aviation news site Airporthaber.com said that among those let go was a deputy chief executive responsible for the airline’s financial affairs.
Authorities have sacked, suspended or detained some 60,000 people, mainly public-sector employees, after a failed coup by a small faction in the military. They are accused of sympathizing or belonging to a religious group led by Fethullah Gulen, an Islamic preacher in self-imposed exile in the United States.
Separately, landline operator Turk Telekom, which is 30 percent state-owned, sacked 198 people on Friday in “cooperation with the security forces” and said some managers had been summoned by prosecutors for testimony in connection with the coup investigation, according to e-mailed statements.
More than 240 people were killed and 2,000 injured in violence surrounding the July 15 coup attempt.
Turkish Airlines shares were up 2.83 percent at 5.08 lira on Monday, in line with the main index. Turk Telekom outpaced the index, rising 3.59 percent to 6.06 lira.
(Reporting by Ceyda Caglayan and Seda Sezer; writing by Seda Sezer; editing by Ayla Jean Yackley/Mark Heinrich)