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Published: Thursday December 19, 2013 MYT 1:45:01 AM
Updated: Thursday December 19, 2013 MYT 1:45:54 AM

Turkey's Erdogan says graft probe 'dirty operation' against govt

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday a corruption probe in which dozens of people have been detained was part of a "dirty operation" against his administration and linked it to a summer of anti-government protests.

"As we fight to make Turkey in the top ten countries of the world ... some are engaged in an effort to halt our fast growth. There are those abroad ... and there are extensions of them within our country," Erdogan told a news conference.

He said police officers removed from their posts in Istanbul on Wednesday, a day after the detention of 52 people including the sons of three cabinet ministers, had been removed for abuse of office and said more could follow in other cities.

(Reporting by Humeyra Pamuk; Writing by Nick Tattersall; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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