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Turkey Begins Trial Of Failed Coup Suspects

BALTIMORE, MD (AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Turkey has commenced the trial of the coup suspects amidst a hostile crowd near Ankara.

Most of the 221 suspects are high-ranking military officers, who were accused of attempting to oust President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in July, 2016.

Former air Force Commander Akin Ozturk was the first in a long line of defendants. There were calls for death sentences, although, Turkish law does not allow capital punishment.

The Police have arrested two teachers, including Nuriye Gulmen and Semih Ozakca who are on hunger strike. They are among over 100,000 public servants sacked after the botched July military coup.

The pair have been on hunger strike for 75 days. Their lawyer has reportedly vowed, that despite the police raid on Sunday, they would “never give up”.

“We want our jobs back! We have not surrendered and will not!” Ms Gulmen demanded in a tweet.

Meanwhile, Amnesty International has condemned Turkey’s post-coup purge of state institutions, contending that many people have been sacked arbitrarily and now face great hardship.

President Erdogan who founded AK Party in 2001 was re-elected on Sunday, entrenching his dominance of Turkish politics.

It would be recalled that the President narrowly succeeded in effecting constitutional changes, giving the President far-reaching powers, including the right to lead a political party.

 

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