Coup heads refuse panel call again

Coup heads refuse panel call again

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Kenan Evren and Tahsin Şahinkaya, the two surviving members of the five-man junta that staged the 1980 coup, have again refused to testify before a parliamentary panel on the grounds that its call was unconstitutional.

A letter sent by their lawyers to the Parliament Coup Inquiry Commission said Evren and Şahinkaya were members of the Presidential Council, which established the constitutional order in Turkey after the Sept. 12, 1980.

“[Evren and Şahinkaya], who acted according to temporary articles of the Constitution, … are not persons that your commission may apply to for information. We inform with respect that clients Ahmet Kenan Evren and Ali Tahsin Şahinkaya cannot make statements to your commission due to the presented reasons,” read the letter.

A second answer to commission

Evren and Şahinkaya have previously refused to speak to the commission as there is an ongoing trial on the issue. The commission repeated on its request, but the second answer was the same.

A local court in Ankara ruled on Sept. 15, 2012, that Evren and Şahinkaya were to give their testimony via an audiovisual conference system. An assigned judge would witness their testimony at a hospital. The next trial will take place Nov. 20.

The 95-year-old Evren, who was the chief of General Staff during the coup and president until 1989, and Tahsin Şahinkaya, 87, are both currently being tried as part of a trial against the last remaining leaders of the 1980 coup.