Second raid on army office under way, Turkey's PM defends plot probe

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan warned against creating tension between the state bodies.

Second raid on army office under way, Turkey's PM defends plot probe

 

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan warned against creating tension between the state bodies as state prosecutors investigating an alleged assassination plot searched an army office on Sunday.

It was the second search of the office in two days and followed the arrest on Saturday of eight soldiers.

The investigation was launched after Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc said a security guard at his home in Ankara saw a car carrying two officers near the house several times.

Arinc is a powerful figure in the AK Party government.

They searched the cosmic offices, which had earlier been sealed by judge as soldiers did not allow any one to enter those rooms. Eight soldiers were detained at the end of ten-hour search.

The search came after Ankara Public Prosecutor's Office, investigating the assassination claims against the pillars of the state, asked the court to issue an urgent decision upon an intelligence that evidence was destroyed, media reports said.

A report said "the operation began after private S.T.'s phone conversation with his father was wire-tapped. One of the two officers caught near Arinc's house, S.T. told his father that they had burned many documents at the Mobilization Regional Directorate. Prosecutors went to the headquarters together with police to search the offices."

"Punishment"

"Nobody will benefit from showing as if there were problems between the institutions. Every claim is being investigated," Erdogan told a business gathering on Sunday.

"An entire institution should not be blamed for the mistakes of individuals. Nobody has the right to hurt the peace in the country with rumours and allegations," Erdogan said.

PM also said, "judicial system will separate the white from the black. If there are anybody that made mistakes, he will face the punishment."

The Chief of General Staff Ilker Basbug and land forces commander Isik Kosaner met Erdogan on Saturday after the soldiers' arrests. The National Security Council, where the assassination plot is expected to be discussed, will convene on Monday.

Newspapers said it was the first time in Turkey's history that civilian judiciary and police raided a military headquarters. The office that was targeted was one of the army's most secretive units.

The military has said the two officers in the car near Arinc's house had been running "security checks" on a military official living in the neighbourhood, who was suspected of leaking information.

Police said that one of the officers had tried to swallow a "piece of paper" when he was first detained.

Media said Arinc's home address was written on the "piece of paper"

Last Mod: 28 Aralık 2009, 14:28
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