Informative Note On The Failed Coup Attempt

Zagreb Büyükelçiliği 02.08.2016

Background Information:

On 15 July 2016 FETÖ carried out a terrorist attempt under the leadership of its military members within the armed bureaucracy in order to overthrow the democratically-elected government of the Republic of Turkey. This foiled terrorist action is the most important act revealing the danger posed by FETÖ. The President, the Prime Minister, the Government, the Members of the Turkish Grand National Assembly and the Turkish people all together defeated this coup attempt and stood by democracy and the rule of law.

During the operations held within the scope of the investigations initiated following the terrorist attempt to stage a coup, more than 10,000 members of FETÖ have been taken into custody so far. The operations still continue. Some members of the organization whose statements had been taken within the scope of the investigations confessed that the terrorist attempt in question had been carried out by FETÖ.

Although the coup attempt in question was led by the members of FETÖ within the armed forces, there is strong suspicion that other members of the organization within the state bureaucracy supported the attempt in one way or the other. Furthermore, there still is a possibility of a new coup attempt.


On the other hand, the National Security Council with its decision dated 30 October 2014 recommended to the Government that FETÖ was an organization to be fought against.

The Council, on 29 April 2016 decided that FETÖ is a terrorist organization.
Furthermore, it was also pointed out in the indictments prepared as a result of various investigations conducted throughout the country that FETÖ is a terrorist organization. For the reasons above, the relevant authorities had been carrying out investigations in order to identify the members of FETÖ before the failed coup attempt.

State of Emergency:

A state of emergency was declared across the country by the decree of the Council of Ministers in accordance with Article 120 of the Constitution upon the recommendation of the National Security Council to promptly defeat the terrorist organization with all its elements and to take the necessary steps in the most effective and expeditious manner for the purpose of eliminating this serious threat to democracy, the rule of law and rights and freedoms of our people. It was approved by the Turkish Grand National Assembly during the extraordinary meeting held on 21 July 2016. The aim of that declaration is not to restrict the freedoms but to enable the Government to act expeditiously.

Article 15 of the European Convention on Human Rights permits the Contracting Parties, to take measures derogating from their obligations under the Convention, in extraordinary circumstances

. In this context, Turkey resorted to the right of derogation from the obligations in the Convention. As clearly stated in the Convention, a derogation is not a suspension of rights. It may bring certain limitations to the exercise of certain rights under required conditions.

Ongoing Investigations:

FETÖ has continued to organize itself especially within the judicial institutions for decades. By way of producing false evidence through the investigations such as Ergenekon initiated in 2007 and Balyoz and military espionage initiated thereafter, it started dismissal operations against individuals that are not members of the organization within the armed forces. It was established by the judgments of the Court of Cassation that false evidence had been produced in those investigations. The judges and prosecutors initiating the investigations against the Government on 17-25 December 2013 are also members of this organization.

On 16 July 2016, in its extraordinary session, the 3rd Chamber of the High Council of Judges and Prosecutors granted authorization to launch an investigation on a number of judges and prosecutors for being accomplice to the attempt of overthrowing the government and the legislative organ, attempting to abolish the Constitution, fomenting an armed insurrection and establishing an armed organization. On the same day, investigations were initiated and arrest warrants, custody orders and search warrants were issued for members of the above-mentioned terrorist organization among judges and prosecutors countrywide.

1.352 judges and prosecutors have been detained so far. 312 judges and prosecutors have been released on the condition of judicial control. 366 judges and prosecutors are currently under custody.

Statement of Turkish Armed Forces:

According to the statement of Turkish Armed Forces, 8.651 military personnel took part in the coup attempt of July 15 perpetrated by FETÖ. A total of 1.676 non-commissioned officers and soldiers, and 1.214 military students also joined the coup attempt. Moreover, 35 planes, 37 helicopters, 74 tanks, and three ships of the Turkish Armed Forces were used during the coup attempt of FETÖ.

Conclusion:

The rule of law, democracy and human rights are founding fundamental principles of the Republic of Turkey. Therefore, proceedings are carried out by independent and impartial courts in line with the principle of rule of law and Turkey`s international commitments. In this respect, the suspects have the right to legal assistance and the right to lodge an objection against the measures of custody and detention taken in respect of them. Furthermore, in the course of their questioning, the suspects are reminded that they may request concrete evidence to be collected, and given the opportunity to invalidate the existing grounds of suspicions against them and put forward the facts in their favour.


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