Mevlana Rumi museum drew 3.4 mln visitors in 2019

A museum in central Turkey dedicated to the 13th-century Muslim mystic poet Mevlana Jalaluddin al-Rumi hosted a record of nearly 3.5 million visitors in 2019.

The Mevlana Museum, located in Konya, drew a total of 3,464,000 local and foreign tourists last year, becoming the country's number two museum destination after the Hagia Sophia Museum in Istanbul.

 Ankara denies rumours of coup plot against Erdogan, arrests 700 alleged Gulenists

Turkish prosecutors have ordered the arrest of nearly 700 people, including military and justice ministry personnel, state media said, intensifying moves against a network accused of orchestrating a 2016 coup attempt.

The arrests came amidst rumours of yet another coup attempt against Erdogan which was denied by the government.

180 FETÖ terror suspects nabbed across Turkey

Turkey on Feb. 18 detained180 suspected members of the FETÖ, the group behind the defeated coup attempt of 2016, state-run Anadolu Agency reported.

Fifty of the detainees are part of a group of 71 FETÖ members who infiltrated the Justice Ministry sought by warrants in a 15-city operation ordered by prosecutors in the capital Ankara, Anadolu Agency cited sources as saying.

14 Rohingya die, dozens unaccounted for as boat sinks off Bangladesh

At least 14 people drowned and dozens more were unaccounted for after a boat carrying Rohingya refugees sank off southern Bangladesh early on Feb. 11, officials said.    

Some 130 people were packed on the fishing trawler that was trying to get across the Bay of Bengal to Malaysia, coast guard spokesman Hamidul Islam told AFP. Seventy of them had so far been rescued.    

Palestinian armed wing calls for attacks on Israel

The armed wing of Gaza-based resistance faction Islamic Jihad called on Palestinians on Feb. 7 to attack Israeli military checkpoints.

"We call for comprehensive and direct conflict as long as the opportunities are available and to embark on the path of fighting and freedom," Abu Hamza, the spokesperson of the al-Quds Brigades, said on Twitter.

Moldova Ex-Intelligence Chief Faces Trial Over Turkish Expulsions

The General Prosecutor of Moldova, Alexandr Stoianoglu, on Wednesday said charges against the former head of the intelligence service, SIS, Vasile Botnari, had been sent to court for the involuntary deportation in 2018 of seven Turkish teachers to Turkey, where they were jailed for alleged links to exiled cleric Fethullah Gulen.