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Turkey opens first trial of 15 July coup suspects

  • Published at 05:02 pm December 27th, 2016
The first trial related to Turkey's failed coup in July started on Tuesday, with 29 police officers facing charges of disobeying orders on the July night rogue soldiers attempted to overthrow the government and killed some 240 people. Since the failed coup, more than 100,000 people have been sacked or suspended in a widespread crackdown targeting the military, police, civil service and private sector. Some 40,000 people have been arrested. Security was tight at the courthouse in Silivri, west of Istanbul, including a heavy police presence. Reporters were not allowed to bring cameras and other equipment into the building. The police officers are charged with disobeying orders to defend President Tayyip Erdogan's palace in Istanbul on the night of the July 15 coup, state-run Anadolu Agency said. Lawyers for the 29 defendants could not immediately be reached to say whether they would deny the charges. Prosecutors are seeking three life sentences for 21 of the policemen and sentences of between 7-1/2 to 15 years in prison for the other eight, Anadolu said. While Tuesday's trial is the first related to the coup, it does not include the alleged ringleaders, who are due to go on trial, probably next year, in Ankara.
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