Administrative court hearing Turkish servicemen’s release request

30 January 2017
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An administrative court in Athens on Monday was hearing a request for release by eight Turkish servicemen accused by Ankara of taking part in last summer’s failed coup.

Their appeal comes after the Aliens’ Department of central police headquarters (GADA) in Athens extended their incarceration at the facility’s jail by three months, citing public safety and national security concerns.

The decision came after Greece’s Supreme Court last week rejected a request for the eight servicemen’s extradition to Turkey. The ruling, however, does not pertain to the criminal charges against the servicemen and relates only to Greek judges’ belief that they may not face a fair trial in Turkey.

The eight officers hope to convince the court that they do not pose a threat to national security and should be released from custody while their requests for political asylum are being processed.

The eight Turks, who fled to Greece in a helicopter during July’s coup attempt, were escorted to the court amid tight security and their hearing was taking place behind closed doors.

The court is expected to rule on their request on Monday, but will likely not make its decision public for several days.

The Supreme Court ruling has added more tension to already strained relations between Athens and Ankara, which has accused the servicemen of treason.

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