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Turkey coup leader Kenan Evren dies

Published 09/05/2015

Turkish general Kenan Evren has died aged 97 (AP)
Turkish general Kenan Evren has died aged 97 (AP)

Kenan Evren, the Turkish general who led a 1980 military coup which ended years of violence but whose rule unleashed a wave of arrests, torture and extrajudicial killings, has died.

The state-run Anadolu Agency said he died in a military hospital in Ankara today. He was 97.

Evren was hailed a hero at the time of the coup for ending fighting that had left some 5,000 people dead and put the country on the brink of a civil war.

But he soon became one of the country's most controversial figures, remembered more for the torture of former militants and their supporters and for introducing a constitution that restricted freedoms and formalised the military's role in politics.

Last year, he was sentenced to life in prison for leading the coup.

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