U.S. tells Turkey it will respond soon to demand for cleric's arrest: justice minister

September 28, 2016 3:55 AM EDT

U.S. based cleric Fethullah Gulen at his home in Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania, U.S. July 29, 2016. REUTERS/Charles Mostoller/File Photo

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ANKARA (Reuters) - U.S. officials have told their Turkish counterparts they will respond within a couple of days to Turkey's demand to arrest Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, blamed for a bloody coup attempt, Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said on Wednesday.

Turkey wants the United States to extradite Gulen, who resides in Pennsylvania, and prosecute him on charges he masterminded the attempt to overthrow the government on July 15. The 75-year-old preacher denies any involvement. Bozdag was speaking to NTV channel in an interview broadcast live.

Washington has said it is cooperating with Ankara on the matter and asked its NATO ally for patience as it processes the extradition request for Gulen to meet U.S. legal requirements.

(Reporting by Tulay Karadeniz and Tuvan Gumrukcu; Writing by Ayla Jean Yackley; Editing by Daren Butler)

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