Critics of Turkish coup decree fear death squad formation

December 25, 2017 - 12:02 pm

ISTANBUL (AP) — A new emergency decree in Turkey that grants immunity to civilians deemed to have helped thwart an attempted coup has sparked an outcry.

Critics fear that it could lead to violence through impunity, including the possible formation of death squads.

The new law, passed Sunday, says people who acted to "suppress" the July 2016 coup attempt wouldn't face prosecution. Previously, it only applied to officials and law enforcement.

Ex-President Abdullah Gul and an ally of Turkey's current president called the law "worrisome" and said Monday it should be re-evaluated.

A new opposition party said that the decree could provoke groups to attack and kill opposition protesters, and link it to the failed coup.

The government has been under a state of emergency since the coup blamed on a U.S.-based cleric.

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