Date: 3:28 PM 6/15/01 +0200

From: azad

Subject: "Garantita l'impiccagione di Ocalan"



Questo Ź il titolo di testa di oggi del Turkish Daily News, "vetrina" per l'estero della Turchia "liberal" (!).

Non Ź un campanello d'allarme, Ź una campana...

Scusate per la mancata traduzione in italiano. Questa sera speriamo di far partire il bollettino Newroz 2001, con il notiziario ordinario - che comprenderą anche i dettagli di questa riforma-farsa della Costituzione turca, su cui ovviamente la stampa italiana tace.

Dino Frisullo (Azad)

(Segue altro invio in versione txt normale)


Ocalan's hanging guaranteed


Constitutional amendments bill prepared by all parties sees the death penalty abolished but, in line with MHP's wishes, kept for periods of war, transition to war and terrorism


MHP's Kose points out that draft does not allow Kurdish broadcasting


While it is made harder to dissolve political parties, the technical majority required by the Constitution has been raised to a three-fifths majority



The All-Party Parliamentary Accord Commission has reached a consensus on 37 of 51 proposed constitutional amendments. The amendment regarding the death penalty has been accepted as the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) wanted it. While the bill ensures that Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) separatist terrorist leader Abdullah Ocalan can be hanged, an extra provisional article sees to it that he will never be covered by any amnesty.


Speaking at a press conference together with all the commission members, commission chairman and Parliament Deputy Speaker Nejat Arseven said the 37-article document was far from being finalized. He said it would be submitted to the political party leaders for their views and approval. Arseven stated that should the party leaders all approve of the bill, the process of getting it brought to Parliament and legislated could begin. He went on to say that the commission was going to continue its work looking at amendments concerning the president, the Higher Education Board (YOK) and the independence of the Judiciary.


The amendments agreed upon are:


By amending Article 38 of the Constitution, restrictions are put on the death penalty effectively abolishing it except for crimes of terrorism and for criminal acts committed during war or transition to war. The MHP's view as regards executing Ocalan are reflected in this amendment.

A provisional article added to the bill states the provisions expanding the scope of amnesties shall not apply to crimes committed before the law goes into effect. This effectively prevents Ocalan getting any reprieve.

By means of an amendment to Article 87 of the Constitution concerning the duties and powers of Parliament, the restrictions on Parliament issuing general and specific amnesties have been lifted by removing the phrase "with the exception of crimes committed under Article 14". This had meant that crimes of terrorism and crimes against the state could not be subject to amnesties. Now, these crimes as well as those committed under the controversial Article 312 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK) can bow be pardoned. In addition, the size of majority required for an amnesty to be passed by Parliament has been increased to three fifths or 330 seats.

While the bill preserves those articles of the constitution it is a crime even to suggest amending (Articles 1,2 and 3), it is also stated that freedom of expression and broadcasting shall not be used to ensure these articles are amended. MHP's Ismail Kose said that as Article 3 states, "The state, country and nation of Turkey are an indivisible whole and the language is Turkish," no permission was given for broadcasts in Kurdish. In contrast to this, by means of a provision stating that the forms, conditions and procedures to be used when exercising freedom of expression and of broadcasting be determined by law, some leeway is afforded to the matter of TV/radio broadcasts in Kurdish.

By amending Article 69, it becomes harder to dissolve political parties. Just what constitutes the crime of becoming a focal point for unconstitutional activity requiring party closure has been defined. As the Virtue Party (FP), currently waiting a verdict to see if it will be closed down or not, wants, in order to dissolve a party it will necessary for party members to consistently act unconstitutionally and for the party leadership to condone it. Furthermore, rather than dissolve a party, the Constitutional Court will rule to deprive the offending party of state funds. In addition, a three-fifths majority vote is sought in accordance with the new bill.

An amendment to Article 118 replaces the phrase "MGK decisions will be given priority notice" to "will be taken into account'. This allows a measure of flexibility when it comes to complying with MGK decisions. The bill also sees the Justice Minister becoming a permanent member of the MGK and the right to vote given to deputy prime ministers in times of coalitions.

The last paragraph of Provisional Article 15, which prevents anyone from questioning in the courts laws and decrees passed by the military regime between 1980-82, has been lifted. Cases to have these laws and decrees overturned can now be opened.

While it was expected to see deputy's immunity from prosecution limited to just when he/she was speaking at the rostrum, the bill in fact preserves it as it is today. A new provision calls for a secret vote to have a deputy's immunity revoked by Parliament. Should a deputy lose his immunity but then be reelected, any case against him will continue, according to a new provision.

Another provision calls for secret ballot when voting to have ministers put on trial at the supreme court. In addition, a 10-day time limit has been imposed on the discussion of investigation commission reports in order to speed up the process.

The application period for Parliamentary Speaker candidates has been reduced to five days from 10.

Article 86 has been amended to ensure that deputies get cushy pension rights.


Ankara - Turkish Daily News