Turkey has arrested 62 former employees of the Istanbul stock exchange over suspected links to US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, who is accused of being behind a failed coup against the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

UPFRONT - Turkey crackdown: Has Erdogan gone too far?

State-run Anadolu Agency said the suspects were arrested on Friday in simultaneous police raids in Istanbul and five other cities.

Detention warrants were issued for 40 more people, the agency reported.

Anadolu said those arrested are accused of using an encrypted messaging application, which the government said was created especially for supporters of Gulen.

It added that the suspects were removed from positions at Borsa Istanbul stock exchange following the attempted coup last year.

Gulen has denied any involvement in the failed coup. 

Authorities have arrested more than 47,000 people since the failed coup, Turkey's interior minister said, including some 10,700 police officers and 7,400 military personnel.

READ MORE: Turkey suspends 9,000 police officers for 'Gulen links'

It has also sacked or suspended 120,000 others from a wide range of professions including soldiers, police, teachers and public servants, over alleged links with what Turkey's government deems to be terrorist groups.

Last month, Turkey temporarily suspended more than 9,000 personnel from the country's police force while they are investigated for suspected links to Gulen. 

Mass detentions immediately after the attempted coup were supported by many Turks, who agreed with Erdogan when he blamed Gulen for orchestrating the coup, which killed at least 240 people, mostly civilians. But criticism mounted as the arrests widened.