18 Dec 2013

Sons of cabinet ministers arrested in Turkey

5:55 am on 18 December 2013

Police in Turkey have detained more than 20 people on corruption charges, including the sons of three cabinet ministers and several prominent businessmen.

The arrests took place during a series of dawn raids in Istanbul and the capital, Ankara on Tuesday.

Officials said the sons of the interior minister, the economy minister and the environment minister were detained. It is understood the financial police are investigating bribery.

There is speculation the arrests could be linked to a dispute between the government and a leading Muslim cleric.

Fethullah Gulen objects to government plans to abolish private schools, many of them run by the Hizmet (Service) movement.

There was no direct comment from the movement.

The BBC reports the arrest of relatives of government ministers is unusual.