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Turkey made 81 extradition requests since coup

October 23, 2017

Turkey has expressed frustration at Germany's lack of movement on extradition requests after a failed coup. A German lawmaker said Berlin should "exert resistance" to instead get German citizens out of Turkish custody.

A German and Turkish flag wave side-by-side
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/C. Charisius

Since the failed coup of July 2016, Turkey has requested the extradition of 81 people from Germany, according to the Justice Ministry's response to an inquiry from the Left Party's parliamentary party.

The Justice Ministry, however, did not provide information on how many of those requests were based on terrorism charges or whether Berlin complied with the requests.

Read more: Turkey: Is Germany Recep Tayyip Erdogan's 'best enemy'?

Turkey has accused Germany of harboring thousands of suspects allegedly involved in a failed coup on July 15, 2016 that left more than 200 people dead, including soldiers and civilians.

'Exert resistance'

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said in November last year that Ankara had already requested more than 4,000 suspected members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

Read more: 'Erdogan wants to establish Turkey in Germany'

Last week, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed frustration at Berlin's failure to handover suspected criminals. "Look, I've given Germany 4,500 files on the PKK, and we did not receive any feedback on any of the 4,500 files," Erdogan said.

However, Left Party lawmaker Alexander Neu said Berlin should not cave into Turkey's demands, especially when German citizens remain in Turkish jails, such as German-Turkish journalist Deniz Yücel, German journalist Mesale Tolu and human rights defender Peter Steudtner.

"Instead, the federal government must exert resistance to get the German hostages out of custody," Neu said.

Authoritarian turn

Since the failed coup, Ankara has orchestrated a nationwide crackdown on suspected supporters of self-exiled cleric Fethullah Gülen, who allegedly masterminded the putsch.

More than 50,000 people have been arbitrarily jailed and more than 120,000 others purged from the armed forces and civil services.

Human rights groups and UN organizations have criticized the sweeping purges and detentions, saying it amounts to an authoritarian shift in the Anatolian nation.

Turkey one year after the failed coup

ls/rt (ARD, dpa)