Turkey's top court rejects appeal against judicial exemption for civilians who resisted 2016 coup attempt
Turkey's Constitutional Court has rejected an appeal against a legal regulation that provides civilians with exemption from any “legal, administrative, financial or punitive responsibility” for actions taken “to suppress the coup attempt and terrorist incidents of July 15, 2016.”
Turkey's Constitutional Court has rejected an appeal against a legal regulation that absolves civilians of their legal responsibility for their actions on the night of July 15, 2016 coup attempt if they resisted the putschists.
The appeal was filed by the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) which said that the legal regulation in question is against the Constitution both in regards to its form and content.
The CHP said in its application that the legal regulation is in fact a “covert special amnesty,” which is why it requires the approval of at least three fifths of lawmakers in parliament.
As for its form, the CHP said that the legal regulation is quite vague and could be used as a toll to oppress any kind of opposition through violence and serves as a justification of paramilitary groups in Turkey.
The Constitutional Court rejected the CHP's appeal, saying that for an “amnesty” to be the case, “a crime” should exist, and resistance against the coup attempt does not fall within the context of a “crime.”
As for the legal regulation's content, the top court again rejected the CHP's appeal, saying that the exemption only covers the events of 15 and 16 July 2016 which occurred “within a specific time period.”
Turkey went through a military coup attempt on the night of July 15, 2016, which Ankara says has been undertaken by the Gülen movement.
Some of the bloodiest scenes occurred at Istanbul's Bosphorus Bridge, which was closed by the military and later swarmed by pro-government protesters. There have been later reports and images that showed protesters attacking the soldiers, even after they had given up.