Trial of accused putschists adjourns till fall

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By Ertugrul Subasi, Ismet Karakas, and Zafer Fatih Beyaz

ANKARA

 An Ankara court on Friday adjourned until this fall the trial of some of the chief suspects in last year’s attempted coup.

The trial of 221 suspects will resume on Oct. 30, said the 17th High Criminal Court.

The suspects were allegedly members of the so-called Peace at Home Council, a committee established by the coup-plotters to replace the government if the putsch had succeeded.

Among the 221 defendants is Fetullah Gulen, who is being tried in absentia. U.S.-based Gulen is said to be the head of the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), which Turkey says was behind last July’s attempted coup.

All but 12 of the suspects are members of the military, including a general, three lieutenant generals, four major generals, 16 brigadier generals, and three rear admirals.

Prominent defendants include Ali Yazici, the former military aide to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan; Levent Turkkan, Chief of General Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar’s ex-aide; and Muhammet Uslu, a former official in the prime minister’s private office.

The trial began on May 22 in Ankara’s Sincan district.

The indictment — accepted by the 17th High Criminal Court in Ankara on March 8 — outlined the “attempt to overthrow the democratic constitutional order by treasonous FETO members with 35 planes, 37 helicopters, 246 armored vehicles, and around 4,000 light weapons”.

The suspects also face charges of attempting to overthrow parliament, overthrow the government, assassinate the president, murder 2,735 people, as well as charges of actually murdering 250 people.

The government has accused FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.

The July 15 attempted coup left 250 people dead and around 2,200 wounded.




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