Free fellow soldiers, try me: Former chief of general staff
High-ranking officials, including İlker Başbuğ, are being tried in the Ergenekon case at an Istanbul court for a coup attempt.Former Chief of General Staff Gen. İlker Başbuğ, an imprisoned suspect in the alleged Ergenekon coup plot case, called on the court while testifying June 7 to only target him, not the officials who were under his command at the time.
“If the aim of a virtual case called the Internet Memorandum is to reach the General Staff, which is me, by [attacking] personnel which worked under my command from civil servants to generals who have a signature on a legal document, then leave my fellow soldiers, let them go,” he said in landmark testimony in the case. “Do it to me, whatever you want to do. I am here and standing firm.”
High-ranking officials, including Başbuğ, are being tried in the case at an Istanbul court for a coup attempt.
The court rejected further witness testimonies starting in January this year. In total, 576 hearings were held in four years and two months, more than 39,000 pages of court documents were recorded and nearly 7,100 interim judgments were given by the court board before the round of final testimonies started.
Başbuğ said the reason why he was there was a “letter written by a patriotic officer,” asking the court to find that particular soldier, angering Judge Hasan Hüseyin Özese.
On Jan. 2, 2012, 17 months after his retirement, an investigation of Başbuğ over his alleged role in the Sledgehammer coup plot was opened.