Turkey’s top appeals court has upheld life sentences handed down to 60 former military cadets who were convicted on coup charges.
Among the victims are the three former female air force cadets — Nagihan Yavuz, Nimet Ecem Gönüllü and Şüheda Sena Öğütalan. They were convicted in May 2018 on charges of attempting to overturn the constitutional order and attempting to overthrow the Turkish government and parliament by use of force as well as membership in a terrorist organization. They were 17-year-old cadets on the night of the coup attempt. They said they had no information about a coup attempt unfolding and were acting on orders from their superiors, who told them there was a terrorist attack.
Along with them, at least 355 other cadets have been given life sentences on coup charges so far.
The military coup attempt killed 355 people and wounded more than a thousand others. Immediately after the abortive putsch, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen group. The group denies any involvement.