World Bulletin / News Desk
Capt. Suleyman Ozkaynakci, Capt. Feridun Coban and Capt. Abdullah Yetik appeared before the court after Ankara made a second extradition request following the rejection of its first one in January.
Prosecutor Ourania Stathea said the court decided not to extradite the three men, while the fate of the remaining five military personnel will be decided in the future. A date for their hearings has not yet been announced.
The previous Supreme Court decision is one of the reasons behind the court’s ruling, Stathea said, adding that it is binding. The new extradition request is “deceptive”, she added.
A few hours after the defeated coup of July 15 last year, eight Turkish former soldiers fled the country and arrived in Greece aboard a hijacked Blackhawk helicopter. The men then immediately requested asylum, a decision over which remains pending.
Christos Mylonopoulos, the defense lawyer who spoke to the press after the decision was announced, said he is optimistic regarding the status of the asylum requests.
“Following decisions like this one, I want to believe their requests will not be rejected,” he said.
The defeated coup left 249 martyred and more than 2,100 injured.
Turkey’s first extradition request for all eight men was denied in January, after a series of court decisions and appeals.