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Putsch in Turkey: nearly 100 soldiers sentenced to life in prison

After an unsuccessful coup in 2016, the court found the military guilty of attempting to violate the constitutional order.

More than four years after the failed coup attempt in Turkey, 120 military personnel were convicted, all sentenced to lengthy prison terms. 92 of them received life sentences, including 12 under particularly stringent conditions, Turkish state agency Anadolu reported on Wednesday, December 30.

The court found the military guilty of attempting to violate the constitutional order. A total of 132 persons were accused in this case. Nine were acquitted of all charges, the rest were sentenced to shorter prison terms.

The verdict at the end of November

At the end of November, a court in Ankara sentenced another 337 defendants in a coup d'etat case to life in prison, finding them guilty of violating the constitution, attempted assassination of the president, and murder. Among the convicts are officers and pilots of the Turkish Air Force. The pilots were found guilty of bombing buildings in Ankara during the coup attempt, and the officers were found guilty of leading the rebels from the Akinci military base in the vicinity of the Turkish capital. In the case of the attempted putsch against the government of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, there were almost 500 accused.

In early December, prosecutors in Izmir issued arrest warrants for more than 300 Turkish military and civilian personnel on suspicion of links with Islamic radical cleric Fethullah Gulen. Most of the suspects are active military personnel, almost 200 have already been detained during police operations in 50 provinces of Turkey.

An attempted coup in Turkey

As a result of the coup attempt in July 2016, according to official data, more than 250 people were killed and about two thousand were injured. The Turkish authorities blamed the rebellion on the Gulen movement, who has been living in exile in the United States since 1999 and are seeking the extradition of the preacher. Gulen himself rejects accusations of involvement in the putsch.

After the suppression of the putsch, the Turkish authorities sharply tightened pressure on the opposition. Hundreds of court hearings have taken place across the country. Tens of thousands of people were detained and arrested, tens of thousands of civil servants lost their jobs. From the ranks of the Turkish armed forces alone, according to official figures, more than 20,500 people have been dismissed.

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