Kavala: "Prosecutors knew all along it was not me who had dinner with Henri Barkey"
Jailed Turkish businessman Osman Kavala sent a statement from the Silivri Prison concerning a much discussed dinner he was accused of having with Henri Barkey, a US-Turkey dual citizen and a former employee of the US State Department.
Prosecutors claimed that Barkey, allegedly a CIA advisor, conspired with Osman Kavala to obtain confidential information through political and military espionage, and that both took part in the process leading to the 15 July coup attempt in 2015.
The focal point of the allegations was that the two had dinner in a restaurant in Istanbul.
After years of silence, Barkey spoke up and said that it was not Kavala, but Asli Aydintasbas, a well-known Turkish journalist who had dinner with him.
Here are some excerpts from the statement of Osman Kavala following Barkey’s disclosure:
“Henri Barkey stated that the person who had dinner with him at Karakoy restaurant on July 18, 2016 was not me. Prosecutor's Office knew this from the very beginning. In the research they carried out in the restaurant, the police officers found out who was sitting at which tables that evening; This was also confirmed in my interrogation at the police station.
During the interrogation, when I was accused of "organizing the Gezi events'' and "participating in the July 15 coup attempt," it was mentioned that I had only greeted Barkey and talked briefly in person at the restaurant, and this was shown as evidence of contact between us. However, in the second indictment, … this event was changed to a planned meeting”
“That was not the sole manipulation in the second indictment. Close base signals from stations were cited as evidence of my frequent meeting with Barkey. However, the reason for the convergence was evident from the records: It was caused by my phone's signal from the base station next to my work office in Elmadag, and Barkey's phone signaling from nearby base stations when he went to Taksim.”
“The obligation of the prosecution to objectively evaluate the evidence for and against by examining the events and facts with an impartial eye and to inform the court honestly is determined by our laws and the norms of the ECHR. Today, in our country, this obligation has actually been removed. Unlawful trials are carried out by prosecutors’ concealment of facts and falsification under political influence. The claim that I had dinner with Henri Barkey at the Karaköy restaurant is a small but very illuminating example of this behavior.”