Turkish authorities have expelled more than 3,900 people from the civil service, military and gendarmerie, the government said in its Official Gazette today, in what appears to be the latest large-scale purge related to last year's failed coup.

The expelled included prison guards, clerks, academics, and employees of the religious affairs ministry, all of whom were suspected of links to "terrorist organisations and structures presenting a threat to national security", the government said.

It is the second large-scale purge since the narrow victory of a 16 April referendum giving President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sweeping powers.

On Wednesday, more than 9,000 police personnel were suspended and another 1,000 detained for alleged links to the network of the US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom Ankara blames for the failed coup.

Among those expelled were 1,127 employees of the justice ministry, including prison guards and clerks, 484 academics, and 201 employees from the religious affairs directorate, the government said today.

Some 120,000 people have already been suspended from jobs ranging from the civil service to the private sector, and more than 40,000 arrested, following last year's failed coup.

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

Popular dating shows banned, access to Wikipedia blocked

In a separate decree, Turkey banned hugely popular television dating shows, a move that been mooted for months by the government.

"In radio and television broadcasting services, such programmes in which people are introduced to find a friend.... cannot be permitted," said the text of the decree.

Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said in March that the ban was in the pipeline, arguing the shows do not fit in with Turkish traditions and customs.

"There are some strange programmes that would scrap the institution of family, take away its nobility and sanctity," Mr Kurtulmus said at the time.

"God willing, in the near future, we will most likely remedy this with an emergency decree,"  he said.

Opponents of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government frequently voice fears that Turkey is sliding toward conservative Islam.

But AKP supporters have said that dating shows receive thousands of complaints every year and the ban is in the public interest.

Turkey also blocked online encyclopaedia Wikipedia, the telecommunications watchdog said, citing a law allowing it to ban access to websites deemed obscene or a threat to national security.

"After technical analysis and legal consideration ... an administrative measure has been taken for this website (Wikipedia.Org)," the BTK telecommunications watchdog said in a statement on its website.

It cited a law that allows it to block access to individual web pages or entire websites for the protection of public order, national security or the well-being of the public.