A symposium hosted by associations of jurists and Istanbul University offered insight into the July 15, 2016 coup attempt and discussed solutions to prevent future coups. The second edition of the International Struggle Against Coup and the July 15 Symposium was attended by high-ranking Turkish officials, academics, journalists and representatives of nonprofit organizations.
The event, co-sponsored by the Turkish Law Platform, the International Union of Jurists, the Association of Constitutional Jurists and the Turkish Justice Academy, came one day after the second anniversary of the coup attempt blamed on military infiltrators of the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ). The coup attempt, which killed 250 people across Turkey, was thwarted thanks to strong public resistance.
Participants discussed factors helping coups succeed or fail, foreign political influence on coups, coups in the Islamic world, actors in coups, the efficiency of coup trials to deter future coups and the removal of dynamics helping the emergence of coups.
Speaking at the event, Justice Minister Abdülhamit Gül said Turkish democracy experienced "a trauma" two years ago and they would never forget the heroic struggle against coup plotters on July 15, 2016. "We have to learn lessons from this coup attempt and resistance against it. The military interventions Turkey underwent in its history led to inevitable slides in our tradition of democracy and hindered its progress, supremacy of law and economic and social progress," Gül said.
Dr. Mohamed al-Moctar Shinqiti from the Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies of Hamad Ben Khalifa University in Qatar, said he knew that the coup would fail when he first learned about it. "Because Turkey has a new political culture and a public consciousness that will not allow coups," he said. Comparing it to the coup in Egypt, Shinqiti said the Egyptian coup succeeded thanks to the political elite's support for it. "The failure of the coup attempt in Turkey instilled hope for the Islamic world. It created the notion that people can resist any military junta to determine their own fate," he said.