Court rules to keep Kavala behind bars

Court rules to keep Kavala behind bars

Court rules to keep Kavala behind bars

An Istanbul court has ruled to keep Osman Kavala, a Turkish businessman who is accused of financing 2013 anti-government protests and playing a role in the 2016 coup attempt, behind bars by majority vote.

One of the judges, who had previously voted for Kavala to be released with a judicial control measure, has adhered to his previous decision.

The next hearing is scheduled for Feb. 21.

Kavala was first arrested on criminal charges related to the 2013 Gezi protests when small protests in Istanbul spread into nationwide demonstrations, leaving eight protesters and a police officer dead.

He was briefly released earlier last year but later remanded into custody as part of a probe into the 2016 defeated coup, with prosecutors accusing him of spying.

The ruling came nearly a week after the Council of Europe’s (COE) Committee of Ministers has taken a further step to launch sanctions against Turkey for not releasing Kavala.

Turkey has accused COE of interfering in the independence of the judicial proceedings.