World Bulletin / News Desk
Mobile phone images of a judge and prosecutor asleep during the trial of a policeman accused of shooting a protester during the Gezi park riots has prompted the Supreme Council of Judges and Public Prosecutors to launch an investigation.
The images of the judge and prosecutor slumped asleep on their desks were printed in the Turkish national press and appeared on social media across Turkey on Tuesday.
The court is investigating the death of 26 year-old Ethem Sarisuluk, who was allegedly shot by riot policeman, Ahmet Sahbaz during the protests held in Ankara in support of Istanbul Gezi park incidents. At the same time as the photos were released on Tuesday and after concerns from the Sarısülük family and lawyers regarding the fairness of the trial, the panel of judges withdrew themselves from the case.
The judges were accused of being impartial after they let Sahbaz carry on working in Sanliurfa province and appearing in court via a video link with a wig and fake moustache.
Sarisuluk was shot on the first day of June this year near Guvenpark – a central park, the focus of clashes between the protesters and riot police in Ankara - and died in hospital 14 days later. A post mortem examination suggested that Sarisuluk was shot in the head by a 9 mm bullet. The encounter between police and protesters, during which Sarisuluk dies was captured by CCTV and media footage and appears to show the accused running from the scene holding a pistol.
A superior court – the Ankara Seventh High Criminal Court – will decide whether or not the recusal (legal term for withdrawal) of the judges is appropriate. If the recusal is rejected, the Ankara Sixth High Criminal Court will continue hearing the case.
The Supreme Council of Judges and Public Prosecutors has now asked for video footage of the hearing (if existed) from the case court and said it will launch an investigation into the prosecutor and the judge if it is necessary.
Pictures were made public almost simultaneously with a decision of the panel of judges appointed for the case decided to recuse from the case stating doubts had been cast over there being a fair trial at the court, after the Sarısülük family’s lawyers raised their concerns.
Sarisuluks' lawyers argue that the court has not been impartial because they let the accused to carry on working in Sanliurfa province and appearing on court screens with a wig and fake moustache to give statement.
26 year old victim Ethem Sarisuluk was shot by riot policeman Ahmet Sahbaz on the first day of last June near Guvenpark – a central park where clashes often occurred between the protesters and riot police in the Turkish capital and died in hospital 14 days later. A postmortem examination suggested that Sarisuluk was shot in the head by a 9 mm bullet. CCTV and media footages showed the encounter between the protesters, including the deceased, and the accused policeman Sahbaz who after the incident ran off the scene holding a pistol.
Gezi park incidents started in Istanbul over a central Istanbul park when a group of activists staged a sit-in in protest to alteration plans regarding the park on May 31.
Clashes between the protesters and police force had started in Istanbul and then in some other cities and lasted for about a four weeks.
Scores of foreign dignitaries from sixty-seven countries and eight international organizations are expected to attend his inauguration ceremony in the Turkish capital Ankara on Thursday.
The U.S. administration designated Charge D'affaires to Ankara to participate the inauguration ceremony of president-elect Erdogan.
Erdogan said he would ask incoming prime minister Ahmet Davutoglu to form a new government on Thursday and a new cabinet of ministers would be announced the following day.
An Egyptian-brokered ceasefire came into effect on Tuesday, bringing 51 days of relentless Israeli attacks to a halt in the blockaded coastal enclave.
Today’s newspapers cover Turkey’s ruling AK party’s congress to elect a new party chairman, and thousands of Turks forming what is hoped to be the world’s largest portrait of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, founder of the Republic of Turkey.
It is not yet clear who he will be meeting during his stay, but there are believed to be no plans for him to meet Turkish Foreign Minister-turned-Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu.
The nation recorded 162,445 medical tourists by the end of the first half of 2014.
At least 100 people are arriving from Iraq each day, many of them smuggled across the border by locals, sometimes paying up to $1,000 per family.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry said it is coordinating with Turkish authorities to find the workers, kidnapped by militants on Monday.
Many Yazidis fleeing from the war in Iraq are also waiting for shelter on the border with Turkey, according to some reports.
The advance of ISIL has alarmed Ankara and its Western allies, forcing them to step up intelligence sharing and tighten security cooperation.
Turkish dailies on Tuesday report on outgoing President Gul's farewell to the public and to his counterparts, and the dam river tragedy in Turkey's southeastern province of Siirt.
The firms were asked to extend their bids until the end of the year, the Defence Undersecretariat said in a statement.
Turkish Union of Bars head Metin Feyzioglu said he will attend a new legal year ceremony and speak, after President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he would not attend in case of a Feyzioglu address.
Turkish FM Ahmet Davutoglu is to become prime minister after Erdogan is sworn in as president August 28, said Deputy PM Bulent Arinc.
The mission will end in January 2015 and not be renewed after being extended once last year, according to lower house of the Dutch parliament