Lawyers leave courtroom during Saturday Mothers' trial

Lawyers walked out of a Turkish courtroom during the hearing of the lawsuit against the Saturday Mothers after the court had rejected recusation for a second time.

The Saturday Mothers were attacked by the police during the 700th week protest on August 25, 2018, when they asked, as they did every week, about the fate of their disappeared relatives and demanded punishment for the perpetrators.

A lawsuit was filed against the Saturday Mothers who were detained during the protest in question in Galatasaray Square, Istanbul on charge of “organizing public meetings and demonstrations without official permission.”

The third hearing of the case in which 46 people stand trial was held in the 17th Heavy Penal Court in the Istanbul Courthouse on Wednesday.

29 people and their lawyers were present at the hearing which started three hours late. In a previous hearing, the lawyers had requested recusation on the grounds that the presiding judge lacked impartiality, which was rejected by the court.

As the presiding judge continued to lack impartiality, the lawyers renewed their request for recusation only to be rejected for a second time.

The lawyers walked away from the courtroom in protest, insisting that the presiding judge remained biased.

After a five minute's pause, the court adjourned the next hearing to March 23, 2022.