Dozens get life over failed Turkish coup

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A court in Ankara has sentenced 92 defendants, including former generals, to life in prison for attempting to violate constitutional order, in a trial linked to the 2016 abortive putsch by a faction in the Turkish military.

The trial, focusing on the incidents at land forces headquarters in Ankara, started in 2017. A total of 132 defendants were on trial.

Out of the 92 life sentences given, 12 were aggravated life sentences, state news agency Anadolu reported. Aggravated life sentences are the most severe terms possible in Turkey.

Twenty-eight people were given varying jail sentences, with some facing up to over 19 years in prison. The charges ranged from attempted murder to membership in an armed terrorist organisation.

The court acquitted nine people of all charges, while trial will continue for three others, Anadolu reported.

Turkey blames US-based Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen for the attempted coup on July 15, 2016 and has jailed thousands over alleged links to the cleric.

Once an ally of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Gulen denies any role in the failed attempt that left over 250 dead.

Ankara has designated Gulen's movement, accused of infiltrating key state institutions for decades, a terrorist organisation.

Several trials related to the coup are still ongoing in Turkey.