Turkey to release 38,000 prisoners early: Minister
Aug.17, Ankara: Turkish Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said his country will grant early release to some 38,000 prisoners who committed crimes before July 1. The move is to make room for the tens of thousands of detentions made in connection with last month's failed coup attempt.
According to decrees published on Wednesday, the release will not apply to convicts guilty of murder, sexual crimes, "terrorism" or state security crimes, or to the thousands jailed after the July 15 attempted coup.
The government decree, issued under Turkey's three-month long state of emergency, allows the release of inmates who have two years or less to serve of their prison terms. It also makes convicts who have served half of their prison terms eligible for parole, reports said.
In a series of messages posted on Twitter on Wednesday, Bozdag said the move was "not an amnesty", and that convicts were not being pardoned but released on parole.
Bozdag said: "The regulation refers to crimes committed before July 2016. The crimes committed after July 1 2016 are outside its scope." As a result of this regulation, approximately 38,000 people will be released from closed and open prisons at the first stage, BBC reported.
The Oslo Times International News Network