Military dismisses Şahin’s testimony .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;} ANKARA - The General Staff rejects an Ergenekon suspect's testimony, in which he pointed the finger at the country's top military chief. Meanwhile, a court refuses to detain Tolon.

The General Staff has dismissed testimony by Ergenekon suspect ex-police chief İbrahim Şahin, who claimed that he was offered a top position in an anti-terror organization.

"The Turkish Military has no connections with illegal organizations or criminals," read a written declaration from the Military yesterday.

Şahin has also said General Staff's information office's head Brigadier General Metin Gürak ordered the formation of the new anti-terror unit.

Meanwhile, the 12th High Criminal Court has rejected Ergenekon prosecutors’ request for the arrest of retired Gen. Hurşit Tolon, an Ergenekon suspect who was detained for seven months before the court ruled there was not enough evidence to hold him.

Tolon’s arrest was based on copies of pages of a book that contained information about the Ergenekon organization but the court ruled that the copies were not secrets and could not be counted as evidence.

The alleged Ergenekon gang’s existence is denied by some suspects but prosecutors are determined to root out what they say is a terrorist network that sought the forcible removal of the government by provoking terror and inciting a coup. The first army’s ex-commander Tolon was hospitalized Jan. 24 and the court set him free last Friday. Tolon’s lawyer İlkay Sezer said Tolon’s release had nothing to do with his health conditions. "Suspicion of crime and tampering with evidence on Tolon is lifted," Sezer said.

Also yesterday, the Istanbul 11th High Criminal Court, which hears the Ergenekon trial, has rejected requests for the release of retired Brig. Gen. Levent Ersöz. Meanwhile, it was learned that the Air Force Command’s request to detain six civilians was aimed at discovering the mole who leaked documents from the military prosecutor’s file about "Headquarter Houses," where clandestine gatherings are said to be held between military officers and Workers’ Party, or İP members.

Detained İP member Hikmet Çiçek was heard by the Court yesterday. Çiçek said the whole Ergenekon case is a scheme prepared by the National Intelligence Organization, or MİT, to undermine the Turkish military. MİT had sent the document detailing the "Headquarters Houses" in 2007 to the General Staff and Istanbul Chief Prosecutor’s Office. MİT suspected that İP leader Doğu Perinçek, also currently under arrest, convened with army officers to organize War Academy Students. Çiçek is described as one of the leaders of "Headquarter Houses" on the list. Çiçek said police are manufacturing evidence to frame İP members. An officer from the Kayseri Airborne Infantry Command, Fatma Cengiz, also currently under arrest to stand trial, has become a new star of the Ergenekon case. The indictment said she had contacts with top-level military commanders, including Chiefs of Staff whom she calls "grandpa," and even threatened Interior Minister Beşir Atalay to open the way for İbrahim Şahin’s promotion. Her phone calls monitored by police suggest she oversaw the process of Şahin's appointment to a new anti-terror unit. The military and the government have denied all claims made by Şahin that he was offered a top position in "S-1," an alleged new anti-terror organization.

A foreign comment on the Ergenekon trial arrived from the European Parliament, whose latest Turkey report raised concerns about the treatment of Ergenekon suspects, although it also encouraged unveiling the clandestine network.

Meanwhile, fraud charges against Tuncay Güney, a key Ergenekon informer, were dropped due to the statute of limitations yesterday.