THE SUN (UK) — A total of 62 students at Kuleli Military school, the oldest such establishment in Istanbul, were collared by Turkish authorities. Before the coup attempt last week, the pupils, aged between 14 and 17, were made to dress up in camouflage and were handed guns with empty magazines, according to their lawyers.
The children have been taken to prison and not allowed to speak to their parents as they were accused of treason against the Turkish State. The mum of a 15-year-old boy caught up in the arrest, Emre, while waiting for news outside Istanbul’s Maltepe Prison said: “Our child has never held a gun before. “They were used, they were forced to do this.”
The incarcerated kids families and lawyers fear their sons could be denied a fair trial due to mass purges in Turkey’s judiciary and anti coup protesters hunger for vengeance. Emre’s terrified mother said the boys were subjected to a mass preliminary hearing in just one crowded courtroom which their families were barred from entering. She added: “They got just two to three minutes to testify.”
Outside the prison, the dad of a locked up 14-year-old student says he has not been allowed to speak to his boy since last Friday when they were both at the school’s “cocktail party”. He said: “Our son went to this school because he loved Atatürk and it was his decision to enrol. “We have nothing to do with Gülen’s organisation.
“We have no sympathy for them.” Interrupting his wife added: “They are just children. “They are innocent. “The state needs to separate the guilty ones from the innocent ones.”
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