Court appeals the acquittals in Balyoz coup case

Court appeals the acquittals in Balyoz coup case

Court appeals the acquittals in Balyoz coup case

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The Anatolia Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office on June 9 appealed a rule of the Supreme Court that suggested the release of seven defendants, including the former general Çetin Doğan, in the Balyoz coup case. 

Mehmet Aydın, the acting chief public prosecutor, presented a three-page statement to the Anatolian 4th High Criminal Court (to be presented to the Supreme Court later on) to revoke the decision suggesting the release of seven defendants, namely retired generals Doğan, Behzat Balta, Mehmet Kaya Varol, İhsan Balabanlı, Metin Yavuz Yalçın, Erdal Akyazan and Emin Küçükkılıç. The Constitutional Court had previously made a decision that 236 defendants, including the seven generals, be tried without arrest.

The statement said the coup plans had been made by Doğan, along with other six defendants in army seminars to overthrow the legitimately elected government when Doğan was a top army commander.

Doğan was the leader of the structure designated to overthrow the government and he acted accordingly, it said.

It also said Doğan mentioned forming a National Reconciliation Government after toppling the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government in a speech he delivered in army seminar and that the context of his speech was related to coup plans as well as those of the other six generals.

Doğan, a retired army commander, said the prosecutor’s office which had ruled the acquittal as well as appealed the acquittal of the seven generals, including himself, was the same and that the prosecutor office may have gotten an order from its superior, speaking to daily Hürriyet on June 8 while on a break between court sessions of the Feb. 28 case.

“It is too far beyond funny. One would not know what to say. I am just sorry. Maybe some superiors ordered the rule. What could the prosecutor do, he is on duty. He makes good on the order. Some people hate me and point me out. I can guess who they are... Judicial officers do not properly know the case and act without knowledge. They do not even know the army seminars are out of the context of the case, even during the investigation process,” he added.

Balyoz was an alleged military coup plot, targeting the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and drafted in 2003. The military is alleged to have planned drastic measures to foment unrest in the country in order to remove the AKP from power. The measures included bombing two major mosques in Istanbul, an assault on a military museum by people disguised as religious extremists and the raising of tension with Greece through an attack on a Turkish plane that was to be blamed on the Aegean neighbor.