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Australian prof detained in Turkey purge

AAP logoAAP 18/12/2016

An Australian university professor has reportedly been held for five months in a Turkish jail without charge as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan continues a purge of alleged opponents.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop is aware of the case of the dual Australian-Turkish academic but attempts to provide consular assistance have been frustrated by Turkish authorities, The Australian newspaper reported on Monday.

"The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade continues to seek to offer consular assistance to an Australian-Turkish dual-national academic ... detained in Turkey,'' a spokeswoman for Ms Bishop said.

Following a failed coup attempt in July, Turkish authorities have targeted people with links to exiled cleric and Hismet movement leader Fethullah Gulen, who has denied involvement.

An Australian colleague of the professor said the academic, a prominent Hizmet supporter, saw his name listed as a fugitive in a newspaper and on the advice of a lawyer turned himself in to police in Ankara.

Supporters of the professor say he was tortured and pressured to sign a pre-written confession, The Australian reported.

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