(AA) – The former president of Turkey’s national science and research agency was arrested by anti-terror police on Tuesday for alleged misconduct, according to a Turkish security source.
Yucel Altunbasak, who stepped down as head of the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey on Friday, and two other technology officials were detained early Tuesday morning.
The source did not elaborate on the detail of the accusations against Altunbasak and his former colleagues – identified as Osman K., a principal clerk at the agency, and Eren Y., a manager at the Turkish Institute of Management Sciences.
Last month, the agency’s former Vice President Hasan Palaz was arrested as part of the “parallel state” investigation into the alleged bugging of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s office when he was the prime minister in December 2014.
On April 6, his detention was extended by a court in Ankara on allegations of “hiring staff with fake diplomas.”
According to Science Minister Fikri Isik, Altunbasak stepped down from the agency, known by the Turkish acronym TUBITAK, “as a result of a mutual agreement.”
Announcing the change on Friday, Isik said that “because of the allegations an opinion was expressed about bringing in some fresh changes.”
Altunbasak has been temporarily replaced by Vice President Mehmet Celik.
The “parallel state” is an alleged group of Turkish bureaucrats and senior officials embedded in the country’s institutions, including the judiciary and the police, which is allegedly trying to undermine the Turkish government.
Dozens have been detained and hundreds of others reassigned across Turkey in the ongoing investigation.