Six families of Turkish soldiers killed by the Kurdish separatist group the PKK have filed a criminal complaint against the Turkish army, claiming it failed to protect them from attack.
They say the military knew in advance about four operations – and either did nothing or possibly even helped the attacks that killed 48 soldiers.
A lawyer backing the families’ cases believes the second scenario.
“There are suspicions of joint neglect and treason,” said Cahit Ozkan of the Lawyers Association. “If these claims are analysed in depth, the conclusion is that the death of these soldiers is not the result of simple neglect, but of an organised and joint action.”
The Turkish army originally denied the accusations, but has fuelled suspicions by remaining silent after further evidence was produced.
There was outrage at claims that the military did nothing despite receiving live images from surveillance aircraft of PKK activity threatening Turkish forces.
The legal action includes allegations of manslaughter through neglect. It is seen as highly significant in a country where the military has traditionally been extremely powerful.