Two Turkish nationals expelled from Kosovo have been sentenced to prison by Istanbul Court

 
 An Istanbul court sentenced two Turkish nationals to seven and a half years in prison, they were part of a group of six people who were expelled from Kosovo in March 2018.

Turkish news agencies said that Osman Karakaya and Cihan Özkan have been found guilty of "participating in an armed terrorist organization" while acquitted of "international espionage".

Both of them have denied the charges.

On March 29, 2018, authorities in Kosovo arrested six Turkish nationals, employees of institutions owned by Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan blames for a July coup attempt in Turkey.

The six surrendered to Turkish authorities in an operation that left behind much uncertainty, much criticism of the institutions and prompted a clash of statements between Turkish President Recep Tayipp Erdogan and Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj.

Following the operation, the Director of the Intelligence Agency Driton Gashi and Interior Minister Flamur Sefaj were fired.

In August this year, the Special Prosecution Office of Kosovo received criminal reports from the Kosovo Police Inspectorate against 22 Kosovo police officers in connection with the deportation operation of the Turkish citizens.

Immediately after the deportation, a parliamentary inquiry commission was set up to investigate the omissions and responsibilities of the institutions in the operation. The commission had found 31 violations by the country's institutions during that operation and the largest violations, according to committee leaders, were committed by the Intelligence Agency and the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

The findings also prompted the reaction of the US embassy in Pristina, which warned that "political pressure on the security sector is a outrageous violation of democratic values."
Two Turkish nationals expelled from Kosovo have been sentenced to prison by Istanbul Court Two Turkish nationals expelled from Kosovo have been sentenced to prison by Istanbul Court Thursday, November 07, 2019 Rating: 5
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