INTRODUCTION: One of Turkey's most powerful figures in recent years, former deputy Prime Minister Alpaslan Turkes, went on trial for his life on Wednesday (19 August).
SV Nationalist Action Party leader Alpaslan Turkes (black suit, black tie, white hair) and other party people sing national anthem
SV Judges at bench and attorneys
GV Turkes and other party people
GV People listening to proceedings
SV Defendants, including Turkes, acknowledge their names read out by court officials, judge talking to court (2 shots)
GV More people answer to names
GV & SVs Court officials and people answering their names
Background: INTRODUCTION: One of Turkey's most powerful figures in recent years, former deputy Prime Minister Alpaslan Turkes, went on trial for his life on Wednesday (19 August). The right-wing party leader is one of more than 500 defendants accused of plotting a take-over of the country. The military prosecutor has demanded death penalties for Mr. Turkes and 219 other officials and members of the Nationalist Movement Party (NMP).
SYNOPSIS: The trial is being held in a specially built courtroom on the outskirts of the capital, Ankara. When Turkes arrived to take his seat, defendants and his supporters sand the Turkish national anthem.
The trial, one of the largest seen in Turkey, had its roots in the widespread troubles and violence preceding a military coup last September.
A 945-page indictment blamed unrest on Mr. Turkes' party. They were accused of murders and political attacks as Turkey verged on civil war.
The first day of the hearing was taken up with formal identification of defendants, who controlled whole districts and cities during clashes with leftist groups.
The court is expected to spend several months hearing allegations of attempts by Mr. Turkes, aged 64, to set up a nationwide network to seize power.