Turkish political scientist Sedat Laçiner has recently been hospitalized due to severe complications from COVID-19, Turkish media reported.

Laçiner has been held in prison since July 23, 2016, and was sentenced to 9 years and 4 months in prison in September 2018 due to alleged links to the Gulen group, accused by the Turkish government masterminding a failed coup attempt in 2016. The group denies any involvement.

More than half a million people have so far been subjected to investigation over ties to the group since the summer of 2016.

Laçiner studied at Ankara University and the University of Sheffield, where he was awarded an MA in international politics with distinction, and King’s College London, where he obtained his Ph.D. Since 2001, he had been teaching international relations and international security at Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University and the National Police Academy Security Studies Institute in Ankara. Professor Laçiner was appointed president of Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University in 2011, becoming the youngest rector in Turkey

Laçiner was editor of the Journal of Administrative Studies and Review of International Law and Politics as well as a regular contributor to TRT and other Turkish television and radio broadcasts. He is also chairman of the Journal of Turkish Weekly, a regular columnist for the Star newspaper and general coordinator of Ankara-based think tank the International Strategic Research Organization (ISRO).

He was appointed adviser to the Higher Education Board (YÖK) president, and in 2011 he was appointed president of Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University (ÇOMÜ) by then-Turkish President Abdullah Gül.

Laçiner is the author/co-author or editor of numerous books and articles, including “Iraq Global War and Turkey,” “The Iraq Crisis,” “Turks and Armenians,” “The World and Turkey,” “European Union with Turkey, Turkey’s Membership’s Impact on the EU,” “The Armenian Diaspora” and “Britain from a Different Perspective.”

He was arrested in July 2016 after the attempted coup, and a prosecutor has demanded life imprisonment for him over his alleged ties to the Gülen movement.