Turkey's Erdogan says not opposed to military coup plot retrials

Monday 06 January 2014 16.41
Tayyip Erdogan said he would not oppose the retrials of the former officers
Tayyip Erdogan said he would not oppose the retrials of the former officers

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has said he would not oppose the retrial of hundreds of military officers convicted on coup plot charges.

Turkey's appeals court in October upheld the convictions of top retired officers for leading a plot to overthrow Mr Erdogan's government a decade ago.

The military last week filed a criminal complaint over the court cases, saying evidence against serving and retired officers had been fabricated.

"There is not a problem for us about retrials as long as the legal basis is established. In terms of regulations, we are ready to do what we can," Mr Erdogan told reporters before leaving on an official visit to Asia.

He said he had a "positive" meeting on Saturday with the head of the Turkish bar association at which the cases were discussed and said that the justice minister was working on the issue.

The military complaint came as Mr Erdogan's government is weakened by a wide-ranging corruption investigation.

It has led to the resignation of three members of his cabinet and highlighted concern about the independence of the judiciary.