Gezi indictment levels terror-related charges against 36 protesters
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet
The indictment accepted by an Istanbul court on Dec. 23 charged a total of 255 protesters, including seven foreigners. DAILY NEWS photoProsecutors have charged 36 people with being members of a terrorist organization in the indictment over the mass demonstrations that swept the country between May and July in 2013.
Charges directed against those indicted included “producing propaganda for a terrorist organization” and “illegal possession of dangerous substances,” daily Hürriyet reported Jan. 3.
The indictment accepted by an Istanbul court on Dec. 23 charged a total of 255 protesters, including seven foreigners.
The indictment was prepared by Muammer Akkaş, the same prosecutor who was controversially removed from a second graft investigation last week, the report said.
Prosecutors said the massive demonstration had gone beyond a democratic protest and turned into the “actions and propaganda of terrorist organizations.”
The indictment designated nine police officers and the owner of a hotel in Istanbul’s Taksim area as the leading victims in the case.
It also described the violence used by the police against protesters during a raid on Taksim Square to clear the area where demonstrations were on June 11 as “proportionate.”
The first hearing of the trial is expected to be held in the first week of May.
The protests began at the end of May against a government redevelopment plan for Istanbul’s Gezi Park. The attempt to save the last green area in Istanbul’s central Taksim Square evolved into the country’s most widespread unrest in recent history, with prolonged protests across the country, resulting in the deaths of five protesters and one police officer, and thousands of injured.