Top body to permit prosecution of prosecutors, commanders involved in Syria-bound truck case
CİHAN PhotoTurkey’s top judicial body has decided to permit the prosecution of five prosecutors and three gendarmerie commanders involved in the halting of Syria-bound National Intelligence Organization (MİT) trucks in Turkey’s south last year.
According to the decision by the 2nd Chamber of the Supreme Council of Judges and Prosecutors (HSYK) delivered on June 4, prosecutors Süleyman Bağrıyanık, Ahmet Karaca, Aziz Takçı, Özcan Şişman and Yaşar Kavalcıoğlu will first present their final defense and then be prosecuted. As a result of the decision, gendarmerie commanders Özkan Çokay, Erdal Yılmaz and Kubilay Ayvaz can also now be prosecuted.
“It is beyond dispute that investigations which are conducted for other goals and without taking care of sense of justice … will have a negative impact on social peace, serenity and confidence and will destroy confidence and respect for the judiciary,” President Mehmet Yılmaz of the 2nd Chamber of the HSYK said, apparently referring to what the government calls the “parallel state” of the Fethullah Gülen movement.
“In the recent past, we have all together seen, followed and taken lessons in investigations and cases – involving Ergenekon, Balyoz, Poyrazköy, İzmir-Istanbul espionage, Hanefi Avcı, İlhan Cihaner, Ahmet Şık and Nedim Şener – what happened when a blind eye is turned to illegality and actions that are not aimed at the ideal of justice and that do not remain on legal ground,” Yılmaz said.
The HSYK’s permission for prosecutions came amid heated debate about the trucks after daily Cumhuriyet published video footage and photographs on May 29 of gendarmerie forces discovering ammunition being carried from Turkey to Syria by MİT last year.
Earlier this week, lawyers for President Recep Tayyip Erdopan accused Cumhuriyet Editor-in-Chief Can Dündar of committing espionage, demanding he serve two life terms in addition to 42 years in jail.
Speaking to state broadcaster TRT over the weekend, Erdoğan said Dündar would “pay a heavy price” for his actions and vowed to take legal action.
Government authorities initially said the trucks were bringing aid to beseiged Syrian Turkmens, but many suspect that the weapons were bound for extremist groups battling Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.