Some of the police officers who allegedly guarded Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan against the putscihst soldiers on the night of a coup attempt on July 15, 2016, have been put in pre-trial detention on coup charges, the Sputnik English reported on Saturday.
According to the report, speaking during a hearing of the trial of 47 people, 37 of whom are military officers, at the Muğla 2nd High Criminal Court, the presiding judge Emirşah Baştoğ told one of the defendants that the “water is extremely cloudy.”
“It is clear that fire opened on civilians from a helicopter. We can’t know what kind of mental state these officers were in. Moreover, some of the police officers who fought against you [coup makers] were arrested on coup charges,” Baştoğ said.
Turkey survived a military coup attempt on July 15, 2016 that killed 249 people and wounded more than a thousand others. On the night of the attempt, a 37-strong team of special forces members attacked Erdoğan’s hotel in Marmaris and killed two policemen. Six aggravated life sentences are demanded for each of the 47 suspects.
The indictment was completed in only four months, considered unusually rapid given the average preparation time for indictments in Turkey. President Erdoğan also filed a criminal complaint against the suspects for allegedly trying to kill him in Marmaris.
Immediately after the putsch the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with Erdoğan pinned the blame on Turkey’s Gülen group.
Fethullah Gülen, the leader of the group, repeatedly denied having any role in the failed coup, but Turkish authorities initiated a widespread purge aimed at cleansing sympathizers of the group from within state institutions, dehumanizing its popular figures and putting them in custody.
Turkey’s Justice Ministry announced on July 13 that 50,510 people have been arrested and 169,013 have been the subject of legal proceedings on coup charges since the failed coup.