Turkish police have detained at least 49 people, including the sons of three cabinet ministers, in Istanbul and Ankara as part of a corruption probe that sent shockwaves across the country.
The major investigation by the financial crimes unit of the Istanbul Police Department looks into alleged bribery connected to public tenders for construction projects, media reports said on Tuesday.
The sons of Interior Minister Muammer Guler, Economy Minister Yafer Caglayan and Environment Minister Erdogan Bayraktar were among those picked up by the police.
The suspects also include well-known businessmen and bureaucrats including the chief executive of Turkish state bank Halkbank Suleyman Aslan and construction tycoon Ali Agaoglu, local media reported.
According to the Turkish newspaper the Hurriyet, suspects are accused of accepting bribes to facilitate getting construction permits for protected areas.
The operation is being widely interpreted as a challenge to the authority of Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, which boasts of being pro-business and has pledged to root out corruption.
In this edition of the show we discuss what has gone so wrong for Turkey under AK Party’s rule, including his foreign policies mistakes, and whether what is happening to Erdogan is the result of an evil probe or foreign plot.