FETÖ-linked suspects face life for coup, killing heroic officer
by Daily Sabah
ANKARADec 02, 2016 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Daily Sabah
Dec 02, 2016 12:00 am
An indictment against 18 military officers for their involvement in the July 15 coup attempt linked to the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) has been accepted by Ankara's highest criminal court.
The defendants face multiple life terms for the attack on a military base in Ankara where Ömer Halisdemir, an officer hailed for sacrificing his life against the coup plotters, was killed.
With the acceptance of the indictment, the first lawsuit against those involved in the July 15 coup attempt in the capital Ankara will soon commence.
The defendants were among those storming the headquarters of the Army's Special Forces Command on that fateful night that ended with the killing of officer Halisdemir. Ömer Halisdemir has since become a symbol of the anti-coup resistance after he was assassinated by a pro-coup general raiding the military base.
Seventeen officers face four life sentences while prosecutors are asking for five life sentences for Lieutenant Mihrali Atmaca, who is accused of fatally shooting officer Halisdemir.
Halisdemir was deployed in the Special Forces Command as pro-coup troops started taking over military bases across the country despite the fierce resistance by the public, police and soldiers against the putsch attempt.
Zekai Aksakallı, the commander of the Special Forces, managed to evade coup troops and telephone Halisdemir to inform him about the individuals behind the coup.
One of them was identified as a general named Semih Terzi who had flown all the way from another city in an attempt to take over the base on the night of the coup attempt. Commander Aksakallı ordered Halisdemir to kill Gen. Semih Terzi in order to prevent the coup.
Officer Halisdemir valiantly followed orders and fired several fatal shots at Terzi as he entered the base flanked with his heavily armed soldiers.
Halisdemir died heroically as he was sprayed with numerous bullets by Terzi's troops. After word of his actions on the night of the coup attempt got out, public sympathy poured in for the officer who worked as an aide for Aksakallı for nearly two decades.
Today, along with newborns, a university in Niğde and several streets across Turkey are being named after Halisdemir.