Colonel Nejat Şimşek, who is a witness in the Akıncı Air Base coup bid case, divulged shocking details regarding the former İncirlik 10th Tanker Base Commander Brigadier Bekir Ercan Van. Şimşek stated that he was serving temporarily at the Adana İncirlik Base during the event and that Van was found hiding in the room of an American commander when a warrant was issued for him.
Akıncı which was renamed Murted after the attempted coup located outside Turkey’s capital Ankara was used as a base by some Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) soldiers, and some of the jets which took off from the base that night bombed several places in the capital, including the parliament building.
Loyal Turkish military officers were also held hostage at the base.
News of the coup attempt
Şimşek said that Brigadier İrfan Özsert called him during the evening and told him that soldiers had blocked the Bosphorus Bridge in Istanbul. Şimşek stated that he then received information that planes had started to strike settlement areas in Ankara and that he and Özsert then decided to head to their headquarters.
On Thursday according to police sources, at least 12 soldiers, including 11 on duty, were arrested across Turkey over their alleged links to Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETÖ).
In the Samsun-based operation, the counter-terrorism police conducted raids in capital Ankara, Samsun, Istanbul, Van, Izmir, Bitlis, Erzurum, Kayseri, Diyarbakır, Hakkari, Bursa, Adıyaman and Tunceli provinces, said the sources, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on speaking to the media. Video: FETÖ-linked 12 suspects arrested across TurkeyThe operation continued to nab one more suspect, they added.
FETÖ and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup on July 15, 2016, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured. Ankara also accuses FETÖ of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.
Broken cameras cast doubt over the incident at FETÖ mansionTurkish court upholds life terms of six FETÖ suspectsTurkey repeats FETÖ extradition request to Cambodia
Found in U.S. general’s room
Şimşek said that he told U.S. and British commanders they encountered at the base that everything was temporary and would come under control soon. In the morning hours, it was ordered that Brigadier Bekir Ercan Van is handed over to officials as a warrant had been issued for him.
“The base’s commander [Bekir Ercan Van] was not in his room. İrfan Özsert called Van and told him to come to the base as a warrant had been issued. Meanwhile, Central Command and security forces had come to the base. A while later, we found out that Van was in the room of the American commander.
We went there too and told him to surrender. Then İrfan Özsert entered the room and left with Van, who was handed over to security officials,” Şimşek said.