Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. Military Space News .

Subscribe to our free daily newsletters

Turkey starts releasing 38,000 jailed for pre-coup crimes
By Fulya OZERKAN and Stuart WILLIAMS
Istanbul (AFP) Aug 17, 2016

Turkey on Wednesday began freeing the first of some 38,000 prisoners not linked to the failed coup who are to be released in a move aimed at relieving pressure on prisons overcrowded with putsch suspects.

The parole decision came as Turkey presses on with the biggest purge in its modern history after the July 15 bid by rogue elements in the military to oust President Recep Tayyip Erdogan from power.

Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said the release was "not an amnesty" but the measure could eventually apply to almost half of the Turkish prison population which has swelled to over 200,000 since the attempted coup.

It will not apply to convicts guilty of murder, terrorism or state security crimes, or the thousands detained after the putsch.

"The regulation refers to crimes committed before July 1, 2016. The crimes committed after July 1, 2016 are outside its scope," Bozdag said on Twitter.

"As a result of this regulation, approximately 38,000 people will be released from closed and open prisons at the first stage."

According to Turkish officials, over 35,000 people have been detained since the coup attempt although almost 11,600 of them have since been released.

- 'Prisons jam-packed' -

The state-run Anadolu Agency said the first convicts began to be released from Istanbul's Silviri prison hours after the announcement.

One of the freed prisoners Turgay Aydin, was quoted as thanking Erdogan and saying: "I am very happy because I am released from prison. I was not expecting it."

Bozdag said in an interview with A-Haber television that the parole could in the end apply to 99,000 out of Turkey's current total prison population of 214,000.

According to Anadolu, the total capacity of Turkey's prisons is for 187,351 people.

Hurriyet columnist Akif Beki wrote on August 11 that "prisons are jam-packed" amid the post-coup purge and asked: "How can that many be arrested without making any space?"

Turkey is in the throes of a three-month state of emergency imposed after the coup, which the authorities describe as an attempt by the US-based preacher Fethullah Gulen to overthrow the existing order.

Gulen vehemently rejects the charges but Turkey has embarked on a relentless drive to expel what Erdogan calls his "virus" from all public institutions.

In the latest move Wednesday, the authorities fired another 2,692 civil servants mostly from the police, the official gazette announced. Some 75,000 people have already been dismissed from their jobs over alleged links to Gulen.

- 'Don't lose Turkey' -

Turkey has pressed the United States to extradite Gulen to face trial back home, with prosecutors already demanding a symbolically tough punishment of two life sentences and 1,900 years in jail.

US Vice President Joe Biden will travel to Ankara next week, the White House announced, in the highest ranking visit to Turkey by any Western official since the coup.

Turkey has been deeply upset by what it has described as the lack of solidarity shown by Western leaders in the wake of the coup bid and is sure to press Biden on the extradition issue.

"If the US does not send him (Gulen) to Turkey, relations will not be the same as they were before July 15," Bozdag said, warning Washington not to "lose" the Turkish people.

And in the latest dispute between Berlin and Ankara, the Turkish foreign ministry reacted angrily to a leaked German government document that described Turkey as a "platform" for Islamists.

With concern also surging over the authorities' attitude on press freedom, security forces sealed and raided the premises of the pro-Kurdish daily Ozgur Gundem following a court order to shut it down.

A Turkish official said the closure had nothing to do with the state of emergency but was because the court found the paper was acting as a mouthpiece for the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

Ozgur Gudem said in a statement on its website that two dozen people were detained in the police raid.

Meanwhile, one of the paper's board members Asli Erdogan -- a prominent writer -- was detained in a police raid on her home, Turkish media said.

However the paper still managed to distribute a four-page edition, with the headline "We will not give in."

Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once

credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly

paypal only


Related Links
Learn about the Superpowers of the 21st Century at
Learn about nuclear weapons doctrine and defense at

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Previous Report
Indonesia vows to defend 'every inch' of territory
Jakarta (AFP) Aug 16, 2016
President Joko Widodo pledged Tuesday to defend "every inch" of Indonesia's land and maritime territory, following clashes with Chinese vessels around Indonesian islands in the South China Sea. In a state of the nation address he also said Indonesia was "actively involved" in seeking a peaceful solution to the broader regional dispute about ownership of islands in the Sea. Widodo's under ... read more

Lockheed Martin gets $36 million Aegis Ashore missile defense contract

Lockheed Martin gets $112 million Aegis modernization contract

New SBIRS ground system enters into dedicated operational testing

The USAF's Next SBIRS Missile Warning Satellite Ships to Cape Canaveral for October Launch

Japan to develop missile as tensions with China mount: report

Britain awards MBDA $239M for ASRAAM missiles for F-35s

Raytheon gets $129 million TOW weapon system contract modification

MDA orders ballistic missile targets

U.S. Navy deploys Puma drone with precision recovery system

Ideas for Protecting Against Small Unmanned Air Systems

US Navy deploys RQ-20B AeroVironment Puma AE with pecision recovery

Flying Autonomous Robots: The Future of Air Combat?

Two ViaSat network encryptors now NSA-certified

GenDyn to improve U.S. Navy digital modular radio

L-3 Communications gets $216 million U.S. Army aircraft contract modification

Raytheon developing next-gen airborne communications

U.K. launches $1 billion defense technology initiative

Russian Aerospace Forces to receive new aerial bombs: Report

Micro Cooling Device Now Gets Defense, Satellite Systems Up and Running 4x Faster

Lockheed and Elbit to team up on U.K. Challenger 2 tank bid

State Dept. approves $231 million munitions sale to NATO countries

U.S. delivers $50 million in weapons to Lebanese military

US approves $1.15 bn tank, weapons sale to Saudi

Russia has $4.6B in military exports in 2016

Philippines eyes 'two-track' talks with China: envoy

Russian military says advanced air defence system delivered to Crimea

Indonesia vows to defend 'every inch' of territory

Turkey police raid companies with alleged links to Gulen

Visible light superlens made from nanobeads

Smarter self-assembly opens new pathways for nanotechnology

New silicon structures could make better biointerfaces

Beating the heat a challenge at the nanoscale

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement