Turkey

Turkey: FETO terror group members get life sentences

Defendants get aggravated life sentences for attempting to overthrow constitutional order in 2016 defeated coup

Baris Kilic, Ismet Karakas and Cemil Murat Budak   | 26.06.2020
Turkey: FETO terror group members get life sentences

ANKARA

A Turkish court on Friday gave aggravated life sentences to 86 Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) members for attempting to overthrow the constitutional order in a 2016 defeated coup.

Ankara’s Heavy Penal Court no: 23 handed down the sentences in the case, concerning the defendants’ illegal actions at the Turkish Gendarmerie Command in the capital Ankara during the coup bid.

In addition to 86 aggravated life sentences, the court also handed out life sentences to 35 others, also for attempting to overthrow the constitutional order.

In the same case, former Col. Erkan Oktem, who injured then Counter-Terrorism Department head Turgut Aslan the night of the coup bid, was ordered 10 times aggravated life sentence for attempting to overthrow the constitutional order, plus 40 years for murder in the first degree and attempted murder.

While the court handed down jail terms for 17 defendants ranging between 15 and 12 years over the charges of aiding the coup attempt, 15 defendants were given eight times aggravated life sentences for murder in the first degree.

And one person was sentenced to 30 years in prison over the charges of attempted murder and aiding a murder.

In the case, while 23 defendants received 12 years imprisonment over the charges of being a member of a terror group, at least 71 defendants were acquitted.

FETO and its US-based leader, Fetullah Gulen, are accused of orchestrating the defeated coup of July 15, 2016, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.

* Writing by Fahri Aksut

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