Date: 3:40 PM 6/15/01 +0200

From: azad

Subject: I: "Garantita l'impiccagione di Ocalan" 8vers. txt norm

 

 

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)

)

 

 

 

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