Turkey to free 38,000 criminals from prison to make room for coup accused



Turkey will grant early release to 38,000 prisoners who committed crimes before 1 July, the government said on Wednesday, amid reports of prison overcrowding after the failed coup.

Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said in a series of messages on Twitter that the move was “not an amnesty” and the convicts were not being pardoned but released on parole.

All 38,000 will be released on Wednesday afternoon, according to reports in Turkey.

The releases will not apply to those guilty of murder, terrorism or state security crimes, or the thousands jailed after the putsch which took place on 15 July.

“The regulation refers to crimes committed before July 2016. The crimes committed after 1 July are outside its scope,” Bozdag said.

“As a result of this regulation, approximately 38,000 people will be released from closed and open prisons at the first stage.”



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