Turkish court arrests Colonel over alleged military plot

A criminal court in Istanbul arrested Naval Col. Dursun Cicek, suspect of an alleged military plot against the government.

Turkish court arrests Colonel over alleged military plot

A criminal court in Istanbul arrested Naval Col. Dursun Cicek, suspect of an alleged military plot against the government.

Cicek, allegedly drafted the plot document, was arrested Wednesday by the 9th Criminal Court in Istanbul after his interrogation by the prosecutors of the Ergenekon Case.

Turkish daily newspaper Taraf published in June a plot document allegedly drafted and signed by Col. Cicek at the General Staff Headquarters in Ankara, outlining what is publicly known as an alleged military plan to smear Justice and Development (AK) Party government and the Fethullah Gulen congregation.

The news story caused wide controversy and stirred heated debates in Turkey which lasted for weeks.

AK Party filed a criminal complaint regarding plot document and carried the issue to court.

Col.Cicek was also arrested back then by a civil court, upon the demand of the Ergenekon prosecutors, but was released shortly after as his lawyer appealed his arrest.

Forensic examinations confirmed that the signature on the photocopy of the said document belonged to Col. Cicek.

However, the Military Prosecutors launched a probe and decided not to launch prosecution as they concluded that the document "was not drafted" at General Staff Headquarters, and such a document "did not exist."

Chief of General Staff Gen. Ilker Basbug reacted strongly to reports and called it " a peace of paper".

"We believe that this piece of paper has been forged by certain circles to wear out and smear the Turkish Armed Forces," Gen. Basbug was quoted as saying.

Discussions in the media centered around whether or not a photocopy could be legally a valid piece of evidence.

In recent days, some Turkish media have reported that an unnamed officer had sent what they called the original document of the suspected plot to a prosecutor.

According to media reports, the unnamed officer also attached a letter in which the officer accuses senior military commanders of being aware of the coup and of ordering the destruction of all evidence of the plot.

The letter which contained the original copy of the document with wet signature brought back the issue high on agenda.

Nearly a dozen of officers, soldiers, and civilian personnel were interrogated by the Ergenekon prosecutors since then.

The latest controversy also comes amid a trial of civilians, retired generals and active-duty officers accused of trying to topple the government.



Agencies

Güncelleme Tarihi: 12 Kasım 2009, 08:40
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