Date: 3:40 PM 6/15/01 +0200
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
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
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
Ankara - Turkish Daily News