Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has inaugurated a massive new airport project in Istanbul, which, once complete, is expected to become one of the world's largest.

Turkish prosecutors ordered the detention of 219 soldiers with suspected links to the U.S.-based Muslim cleric.

The soldiers were accused of orchestrating a failed coup in 2016, state-owned Anadolu news agency said on Friday.

On the orders of the Istanbul chief prosecutor’s office, an operation was launched at 01:00 am (2200 GMT) to seize the suspects.

All the soldiers affected are on active service including four colonels, the Hurriyet newspaper website reported.

Police have conducted a steady stream of raids against alleged supporters of the preacher Fethullah Gulen since the coup attempt in July 2016.

However, Gulen denies any involvement and has condemned the coup.

In the botched coup attempt, 250 people were killed.

President Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday that Turkey would start new initiatives abroad to target the financing of Gulen supporters.

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