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Turkey sentences 1980 coup leaders to life in prison

Published on Jun 18, 2014 7:48 PM
 
Turkish leftist demonstrators hold pictures of people who were executed or died in jail during the military rule that followed the 1980 coup in Turkey, in front of a courthouse in Ankara on June 18, 2014. A Turkish court on Wednesday handed life sentences to two ageing generals behind a 1980 military takeover, the bloodiest in Turkey's coup-ridden history. -- PHOTO: AFP

ANKARA (AFP) - A Turkish court on Wednesday handed life sentences to two ageing generals behind a 1980 military takeover, the bloodiest in Turkey's coup-ridden history.

Kenan Evren, 96, and Tahsin Sahinkaya, 89, were found guilty of setting the stage for a military intervention, ousting the civilian government by force and committing acts against the forces of the state.

Prosecutors had demanded so-called aggravated life sentences for Evren, who became president after the coup, and Sahinkaya, the former air force commander.

The ruling sparked cheers and applause from the public gallery inside the courtroom, who chanted: "This is just the beginning, the coup authors will pay the price".

 
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