Expand “postmodern coup” trials to secularist civilians - pro-government columnist

Trials over the Feb. 28, 1997 “postmodern coup” that resulted in a Turkish government led by an Islamist party being pressured out of office should be expanded to include secularists outside the military as well, pro-government columnist Ersoy Dede wrote.

“Why do we still not see the civil society, academic, business world and political wings of this case?” Dede asked.

“The incident we call Feb. 28 was just the serving of the food. If we do not go down to the kitchen where it was cooked, it will be meaningless.”

Following a demonstration over Jerusalem in a conservative Ankara suburb that turned into a protest for Sharia law, the National Security Council of the military pressured Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan to sign a document agreeing to its “red lines” on issues of religion and secularism on Feb. 28, leading to a standoff that would only end with Erbakan’s resignation on June 18, 1997.

On Thursday, prosecutors requested aggravated life sentences for 60 suspects said to have been behind the Feb. 28 process, which prosecutors characterise as an attempt to overthrow the government – including former chief of staff İsmail Hakkı Karadayı.


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