Turkish court releases 10, including Ret General, Prof in Ergenekon case .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:none; color:#000000;} .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink:hover { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:underline; color:#990000;} RELATED STORIES
Four army officers arrested under Ergenekon probe
Prominent names in Turkey's Ergenekon probe
The former head of the Higher Board of Education, Kemal Guruz, who was detained in the latest wave of Turkey’s controversial Ergenekon probe, was released by the prosecutor's office on Sunday, TV channels reported. An Istanbul court early ordered the release of nine others detained on Friday as part of the investigation. (UPDATED)

Guruz, who is also know for his Kemalist stance, appeared before an Istanbul court with fellow detainees, journalist Yalcin Kucuk and retired General Kemal Yavuz. No information has been released about the legal situation for Kucuk and Yavuz so far.

Erdal Senel, a retired general and a former law consultant for the Chief of Military Staff, also appeared in court with prosecutor's demanding he be charged and taken into custody, the Anatolian Agency reported.

The Istanbul court early order the arrest of nine people and the released of nine others, including former Secretary-General of the National Security Council (MGK), Tuncer Kilinc, detained on Friday.

Retired colonel Ilyas Cinar was among the nine released together with Kilinc without charge on Sunday.

Kilinc was a member of the MGK during the military's intervention into rising political Islam in Turkish politics in 1997, which became known as the "February 28 Process". He came into the spotlight both during and after his term, and has been vocal in saying that the country could see a repeat of this process if the rise of political Islam continues.

However, nine people --including the former head of the Special Forces Unit, Ibrahim Sahin, his nephew Yasar Oguz Sahin who is also a member of the Special Forces, and businessman Hudai Unluer were charged with membership in a terrorist organization.

The unit was formed to support the fight against the terror organization, PKK, but later claimed to have transformed into a gang that carried out illegal operations, including murders.

In the late 1990s the Susurluk case, aimed at unveiling a shadowy illegal organization, known as "deep-state", began after a traffic accident involving a parliamentarian, a police official and a fugitive rightist militant.

The case uncovered the mysterious relationship between the country's mafia, police and political figures. It was claimed that Sahin and his unit were the responsible for many unsolved crimes. The suspects of the Susurluk crimes say their actions were carried out in line with state interests.

The court ordered that the nine charged be detained pending trial.

Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan called on the opposition to let investigating magistrates do their job, after opposition figures accused him of heading a "Peron-style dictatorship" in a reference to the late Argentinean strongman.

"Magistrates and prosecutors in this country have a free conscience. No-one must think he is above the law," Erdogan told a meeting of his Justice and Development Party in Ankara.

"Politicians in particular" should avoid meddling in legal affairs, he said, adding that democracy in Turkey would be stronger after the investigation which has raised tensions between government supporters and members of the secular opposition.
The Ergenekon probe was launched in 2007 after the discovery of hand grenades at a house in Istanbul. Then it was widened to crackdown an "illegal gang" allegedly planning to stage a series of incidents that would eventually provoke a military coup.

More than 100 people were detained and around eighty of them were formally charged for "forming a terrorist organization or being a member of a terrorist organization."

But the probe became controversial when the first indictment failed to satisfy the expectations of concrete evidence that would match the allegations.

The detainments of high-profile opponents of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) have fuelled charges that the ruling party is launching a witch hunt against its opponents.