Erdogan Praises Judiciary’s Positive Role Post-Coup Bid

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Turkish president says 3,495 judges and prosecutors have been taken into custody for links to defeated coup so far

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan praised Turkey’s judiciary Thursday for taking “quick action” following the July 15 foiled coup.Speaking at an opening ceremony of the country’s new judicial year at the Presidential Palace in Ankara, Erdogan said: “The judiciary was one of the institutions that passed the test with flying colors on the night of July 15.”

He added that 3,495 judges and prosecutors were taken into custody for their alleged links to Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) behind the defeated coup.

Erdogan said the detentions would not lead to “weakness” in judiciary. “I believe, on the contrary, it will provide a serious relief in establishing real justice.”

About holding the opening ceremony of the new judicial year at the Presidential Palace, the president said it did not “overshadow” the independence of the judiciary in any way, adding: “On the contrary, it enhances independence of judiciary.”

Around 1,500 people attended the ceremony, including Parliament Speaker Ismail Kahraman and Prime Minister Binali Yildirim.

Turkey’s government has said the defeated coup, which left more than 240 people martyred, was organized by followers of Fetullah Gulen who has lived in self-imposed exile in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania since 1999.

Gulen is accused of leading a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police and judiciary.

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