Albania orders closure of three Turkish schools over Gülen links

The Albanian government will close three schools that are allegedly run by the Gülen movement that Turkey accuses of masterminding the coup attempt in 2016, state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

The three schools will include the Memorial International School of Tirana, Haffix Abdulla Zembaku madrasah in Korce and Ali Korca madrasah in Kavaje, Anadolu said.

Turkey claims that schools serve the Gülen movement’s objective of infiltrating state institutions.

The Turkish government has taken over the administration of over 250 schools abroad linked to the movement. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan blames Fethullah Gülen, a Turkish preacher living in self-imposed exile in the United States, for the failed coup, and has since been seeking to shutter or take over hundreds of schools around the world run by the Gülen movement.

Hasan Yavuz, vice president of the government’s international educational arm, the Maarif Foundation, told Daily Sabah that the foundation had taken over some 250 schools in 40 countries, totalling 30,000 students.