Trial opens in Turkey against 2 hunger-striking teachers

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Two dismissed civil servants in Turkey who went on a hunger strike and are accused of membership in a terror organization have gone on trial.

Academic Nuriye Gulmen and teacher Semih Ozakca were detained in May on the 76th day of their hunger strike, launched to demand a return to their jobs.

The two are accused of membership in a militant group, engaging in terror propaganda and violating laws on demonstrations. They face maximum 20 years in prison. They were not present at Thursday's hearing due to "health and security," court officials said.

They are among more than 110,000 civil servants who have been dismissed under the state of emergency declared after last year's failed coup attempt.

Critics say the state of emergency is used to crackdown on the opposition.