Ankara court officially rules non-suit in 1980 military coup case
ANKARAAn Ankara court on May 4 officially ruled for a non-suit in the last hearing of the Sept. 12, 1980 military coup case, citing the death of two defendants - namely the chief of general staff and the air force commander of the time - the only military figures still alive when the trial began five years ago.
The Ankara 10th high criminal court board ruled for the non-suit in the coup case into Kenan Evren, the former chief of general staff and the 7th president of Turkey, and Ali Tahsin Şahinkaya, the retired air commander.
The plaintiffs reportedly stated in their final plea that the two defendants had lost their lives and demanded that the court resist the top court’s reversal of the conviction of the former generals.
The court board subsequently ordered a non-suit for the case.
Evren died on May 9, 2015 aged 97, while Şahinkaya, who was the last general from the coup era, died two months later at the age of 90.
The trial of both commanders began in April 2012, with the prosecution claiming that the two had attempted to “eliminate the Turkish constitution” and “override parliament.”
Both generals were also demoted to the rank of private.
They were ultimately sentenced to life imprisonment on June 18, 2014 but never went to prison because of their poor health. The supreme court also reversed the conviction of Evren and Şahinkaya.
The 1980 coup came after years of violent unrest in Turkey. Three subsequent years of military rule saw hundreds of thousands imprisoned for political reasons, some dying from torture or poor conditions. Fifty people were also executed.