"Turkey: Spurious Case Against Converts Prolonged," from Compass Direct:
SILIVRI, Turkey, November 30 (Compass Direct News) – Bowing to demands of prosecution lawyers, yesterday the judge presiding over a contrived case against two Turkish converts to Christianity for “insulting Turkishness” ordered 12 more witnesses to testify.
During a 50-minute hearing yesterday in Silivri, 45 miles west of Istanbul, Judge Metin Tamirci summoned two alleged eyewitnesses, five gendarme soldiers, two policemen and three local residents to appear at the next hearing before the Silivri Criminal Court, set for March 13.
Ultranationalist lawyer Kemal Kerincsiz claimed on behalf of his three young plaintiffs that the potential witnesses on his September 4 petition to the court had “information and eyewitness details” pertinent to the accusations against defendants Hakan Tastan and Turan Topal.
The three Silivri residents summoned are listed on the defendants’ computers as people who had requested Christian literature and a visit from a local Bible correspondence course with which Tastan and Topal worked.
The prosecution had previously requested several of these individuals as potential witnesses, but their admission into the case had been denied by the previous judge. Judge Neset Eren withdrew from the case in September after Kerincsiz accused him of improper bias in his handling of the litigation.
“A year has passed, and the court has already heard all the testimonies on both sides of this case,” defense lawyer Haydar Polat told Compass yesterday. “But it is clear from today’s hearing that the court plans to continue this unfounded case for at least another year or more.”
Posted by Robert