An Istanbul court on Wednesday handed the chairwoman of Turkey’s largest medical union a suspended sentence of two years and eight months for “making propaganda for an armed terrorist group.”
Turkish Medical Association (TTB) chairwoman Şebnem Korur Fincancı had been in custody since the last week of October following her call for a probe into the alleged use of chemical weapons against Kurdish militants in northern Iraq.
She was released from custody and would not have to return to jail. The verdict was met by a roar of applause and chants in solidarity with Ms Fincancı at Istanbul’s high-security Çağlayan courthouse.
Ms Fincancı had defended her remarks as merely medical views regarding social media posts in October, allegedly showing Turkish armed forces using chemical weapons against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants in northern Iraq.
At the time, Ms Fincancı and some opposition party members had called for an independent investigation.
The Turkish army, which often targeted alleged PKK posts in Iraq and Syria’s north, denied using or keeping weapons that were subjected to international bans in its inventory.