'The process has not ended,’ Turkish PM says on top court’s Balyoz appeals verdict
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan speaks during a joint press conference in Ankara with visiting Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych Oct. 9. DAILY NEWS photo, Selahattin SÖNMEZIn his first remarks on the Turkish Supreme Court of Appeals’ verdict in the “Balyoz” (Sledgehammer) coup case, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said that the government would follow the judicial process.
“The Supreme Court of Appeals has upheld part of the first instance court’s rulings; it has quashed some others while part of [the rulings] were approved with changes. The process has not ended at this point,” Erdoğan said during a press conference in Ankara with visiting Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych Oct. 9. He was implicitly referring to the fact that further individual applications could be made to the Constitutional Court.
“We will follow [the case]. That is my answer,” he said.
The prime minister also commented on the situation of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) lawmaker Engin Alan as the retired general’s deputy status could fall as his jail sentence has been upheld by the Supreme Court of Appeals.
“The process continues. If it becomes definite, the necessary under the articles 83 and 84 of the Constitution will be done,” he said.
The convictions of 237 suspects in the Balyoz trial, one of Turkey’s landmark coup plot cases, were upheld by the Supreme Court of Appeals on Oct. 9.
Along with Alan, the convictions of top suspects including former First Army Gen. Çetin Doğan, former Air Force Gen. Halil İbrahim Fırtına and former Navy Adm. Özden Örnek were also approved.
The court approved the acquittal of 36 suspects, while quashing the convictions of 63 other suspects on the grounds that they had agreed to commit a crime but had not followed through and actually committed an infraction.