A social activity with F-16s on the night of the coup attempt
Businessman Hakan Çiçek who was caught in the morning of July 16 near Akıncı base while trying to escape in the open field confessed in his testimony to the prosecutor’s office to have spent the night at the base.
“I deal with trade. I have three companies. I am the owner of Anafartalar College in Ankara. Colonel Ahmet Özçetin, a parent of one of our students invited me to the Akıncı base for a social activity around 20:30 Friday night and I went. Ahmet Çetin was there as well as one or two people I did not know. The military activities started after I left. They had told me there would be social activity,” he stated in his defense.
Ahmet Çetin, the commander of the Akıncı base said that all three of his children study at Anafartalar College in his testimony to the prosecutor.
What kind of a social activity could there have been at the base on the night of July 15?
It is interesting that Özçetin talks about a “social activity,” like Çiçek. According to his testimony, a soldier whose name he could not remember called from the special forces and informed the need to make planning for a joint mission between the special forces and the air forces. He asked to organize an activity in order to develop a common language between the two. The date is set as July 15.
“We decided to organize a social activity and we were going to do it at the 143rd fleet. At around 16:00, I saw them in civilian clothing at the 143rd fleet,” said Özçetin.
The issue is the fact that these soldiers came for the social activity in civilian clothing, changed to their military clothes after nightfall, took up the arms they brought with them and started acting beyond the bounds of a social activity. It is highly probable these soldiers are the 33 members of the special force who left the Akıncı base on the night of July 15 with a white bus, and raided the Chief of General Staff, apprehending the generals.
One cannot actually say Ahmet Özçetin had spent the night attending a social activity. When you read the indictment of the Akıncı Air Base suspect, Özçetin appears as one of the most operational names in the central command of the coup and the plotter who assumes the mission to direct the F-16, which took off from the base.
According to the indictment, Özçetin is the person who gave the order for the F-16 pilots to fly low over the parliament, the General Chief of Staff and the special forces center in Gölbaşı, Kızılay square and the presidency. He is also claimed to be the person who gave the order for some of those areas to be bombed. Several suspects said in their testimonies that he gave these instructions.
In addition, when air force commander Abidin Ünal was brought to Akıncı base that night after being apprehended in İstanbul, Özçetin was the putschist who greeted him.
“He told me ‘welcome general.’” I said ‘I am not welcome.’ He said ‘we are fixing the disrupted settings.’ I said ‘your settings are disrupted,’” General Ünal recounts their encounter in his testimony.
Hakan Çiçek who was invited by Colonel Özçetin for a social activity was a part of the civil executive team of the coup, together with Adil Öksüz, Kemal Batmaz, Nurettin Öksüz and Harun Biniş. Çiçek is a businessman who has proven that he has gone to the United States several times ahead of July 15 with the others (except for Biniş). He is the owner of companies that are subject to investigation for its links to the Fethullahist Terorist Organization (FETÖ) and a user of Bylock. Çiçek is also the brother of Major Gökhan Çiçek on duty in the Güvercinlik base. According to the indictment, Gökhan Çiçek used a helicopter in the transfer of helicopters from Güvercinlik to Akıncı that night. And he spent the whole coup night at the Akıncı base.
According to the testimonies of the suspects who have confessed, Gökhan Çiçek is an officer who spent time in the houses of the brotherhood. The testimony of İlkay Ateş who was one of the pilots of the helicopters that bombed Ankara is important.
Ateş said that while on duty in 2005, a “brother” called Nevzat introduced him to Gökhan Çiçek and they stayed in the same house until 2007.
“Gökhan Çiçek’s brother has the statue of ‘brother’ in FETÖ and transfers the instructions he receives from above to the officers. In addition, I know from what Gökhan Çiçek told me that some of his close relatives are the body guards of Fethullah Gülen,” recounts Ateş.
As it can be seen, while going after traces of Hakan Çiçek near the Akıncı air base, we have found ourselves in the Güvercinlik helicopter base 25 kilometers southeast of Akıncı.