Turkey moves to scrap coup trial courts

Turkey's ruling party is pushing through parliament a reform abolishing the special courts used in coup conspiracy cases against hundreds of military officers

Turkey moves to scrap coup trial courts

World Bulletin/News Desk

Turkey's ruling party is pushing through parliament a reform abolishing the special courts used in coup conspiracy cases against hundreds of military officers, Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said on Saturday.

"The proposal is ready and will be submitted today," said Bozdag, of the Justice and Development Party (AK Party), state-run Anatolia agency reported. The change in regulation was expected to take place late on Saturday.

However, the reform is not expected to affect the ongoing trials of hundreds of people accused of links to coup plots or to Kurdish militants. Turkish media reported the trials would run their course before the courts were abolished.

The special authority courts, established by Erdogan's government in 2005 to replace state security courts, have pursued cases against alleged anti-government plots within the establishment, including the military.

Earlier this month, Erdogan noted the public disquiet about the courts. He criticised special prosecutors for acting as if they were "a different power within the state" and said the courts had been useful at times but also harmful.

However, the dismantling of the courts is likely to face opposition from advocates of the trials, who see them as an important part of Turkey's democratisation. They say the courts call to account anti-democratic forces that once dominated Turkey.

Last Mod: 30 Haziran 2012, 15:42
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