Erdogan: death penalty to be considered for coup plotters

Erdogan: death penalty to be considered for coup plotters
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan gave signals on Sunday that Turkey might reinstate capital punishment in the wake of Friday's failed coup attempt.
2 min read
17 July, 2016
Erdogan may reintroduce the death penalty in Turkey to punish Friday's failed coup plotters [Getty]
Executions may be reinstated in Turkey after Friday's bloody putsch attempt, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hinted on Sunday. 

The death penalty, which was legally abolished in 2004 as part of Turkey's bid to join the EU, may be reintroduced to punished those accused of leading Friday's coup attempt. 

"We want the death penalty," a large crowd of Erdogan supporters shouted as Turkish President gave his speech on Sunday evening.

"We hear your request. In a democracy, whatever the people want they will get," Erdogan responded. 

The Turkish government will be in contact with Turkey's opposition parties to reinstate capital punishment, he said.

"We will not delay this decision for long. Because those who attempt a coup in this country must pay," he added.

Amnesty International urged Turkey, which has not executed anyone since 1984, to uphold human rights in its response to the coup attempt and to not bring back the death penalty.

"Upholding human rights and the rule of law is the job of elected governments. The coup plotters in Turkey forgot this; it is crucial that President Erdogan and the authorities do not," the group's international director for Europe John Dalhuisen said on Saturday.

"Investigations and accountability should now begin, but this is no time for further rights regression in Turkey," Dalhuisen said, "Fair trials must be ensured and there must be no return to the death penalty in the country, which would deliver justice for no-one."

Turkish authorities confirmed on Sunday that more than 6,000 people were arrested as part of the government's crackdown on those involved in the coup attempt.

Agencies contributed to this report.