Turkish court accepts indictment seeking life sentences for relatives of major coup suspect

Emine Şennur Şen

A Turkish court in Sakarya province accepted an indictment on Friday against the sister-in-law and the father-in-law of Turkey’s alleged major coup suspect Adil Öksüz.

The indictment drafted by the Sakarya Chief Prosecutor’s Office and seeks a life sentences and additional jail sentence of up to 15 years for the Öksüz’s sister-in-law Emine Şennur Şen, who is also the wife of jailed prominent journalist Erdal Şen, and his father-in-law Cevat Yıldırım.

Öksüz is accused by the autocratic regime of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of being the head of the Gülen movement’s alleged network within the air force. He was briefly detained after the coup attempt and is still at large. Şen and Yıldırım are accused of having used ByLock, and of membership in a “terrorist organization.”

ByLock is a controversial mobile app that Turkish authorities claim to be the top communication tool among followers of the Gülen movement.

Turkey survived a controversial military coup attempt on July 15, 2016 that killed 249 people. Immediately after the putsch the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with President Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen movement.

Fethullah Gülen, who inspired the movement, strongly denied having any role in the failed coup and called for an international investigation into it, but President Erdoğan — calling the coup attempt “a gift from God” — and the government initiated a widespread purge aimed at cleansing sympathizers of the movement 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. (SCF with turkeypurge.com)

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