July 15 Coup Attempt

Greek court agrees to extradite three Turkish officers

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Three Turkish soldiers who fled to Greece following the failed coup in Turkey on July 15 will be extradited from Greece.

Athens has agreed to extradite three of the eight servicemen who fled Turkey for Greece after the failed July coup. On Monday, the court had rejected Turkey’s extradition request for three others.

The court has now ruled that some of the soldiers should stand trial for three of the four crimes for which they are accused. The crimes include involvement in the coup attempt, impeding a parliamentary session and seizure of a helicopter.

THE COURT DETERMINED THAT IT HAD NOT RECEIVED CONCLUSIVE EVIDENCE

The court determined that it had not received conclusive evidence linking the men to an attack on Erdogan.

The decision comes a day after different judges rejected Turkey’s request to extradite three other soldiers, arguing that authorities had not provided sufficient evidence and that sending them back would put their personal safety at risk.

ALL EIGHT SOLDIERS DENY INVOLVEMENT IN THE ATTEMPT 

All eight soldiers deny involvement in the attempt to dislodge Erdogan from power. The three pilots affected by Tuesday’s ruling said they would appeal the decision, maintaining that they will not receive a fair trial in Turkey, where tens of thousands of people have been detained since the coup, including top generals. The men will be held in custody until then.

THE OFFICERS HAD REQUESTED ASYLUM AFTER LANDING A MILITARY HELICOPTERS

The officers had requested asylum after landing a military helicopter in the northern city of Alexandroupoli on July 16. Greece refused to grant them asylum in September, a decision that the officers are also currently appealing.

Ankara outraged

Officials in Ankara were outraged by Monday’s decision not to extradite three of the officers. “Greece is in the NATO alliance with Turkey and is a NATO ally,” Defense Minister Fikri Isik said.” “Our expectation from the Greek government is to display every kind of effort possible for them to be returned.”

Turkey could still appeal, although any final decision rests with the Greek minister of justice.

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