Top Turkish court upholds life sentence for former youth leader at head of ‘one-man organization’
The Supreme Court of Appeals has upheld once again a life imprisonment sentence for Sarp Kuray, a former politician who has been tried for 21 years for founding an illegal organization.The Supreme Court of Appeals has upheld once again a life imprisonment sentence for Sarp Kuray, a former youth leader and politician who has been tried for 21 years for founding an illegal organization.
Kuray was retried upon a European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) decision that ruled that his rights were violated, ordering Turkey to pay 10,000 euros for disregarding the suspect’s demand to testify, as well as the long trial process.
Kuray is known as the sole remaining member of the leftist “June 16 Organization,” which he allegedly founded after serving a four-year jail sentence for being a member of the outlawed Revolutionary Youth Federation (Dev-Genç) organization in 1975.
Actress Nur Sürer, Kuray’s wife, expressed her dismay for the decision, announcing that she would file an individual complaint to the Constitution Court. The indictment accuses Kuray of founding and managing the organization and ordering several actions that included murders, attacks resulting in injury and bombings between 1986 and 1990.
“The Constitution Court has become a savior,” she said, in reference to recent releases of the suspects in the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK), Ergenekon and “Balyoz” (Sledgehammer) cases.
Kuray surrendered in 2009, after saying farewell to Ankara Sanat Theater, which he co-founded. Kuray’s daughter, Zeynep Kuray, is a prominent journalist with daily BirGün and the Fırat News Agency (ANF).