The most remarkable quote belongs to Hasan Gerçeker, the chairman of the Supreme Court of Appeals. ?This package is against the Constitution,? he declared. According to him, the proposals are against the principle of ?separation of powers? as written in the introduction of the current constitution.
A 23-article reform package that was drawn up by the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government in a bid to bring Turkish democracy closer to the level of Western democracies and to restructure judicial institutions to ensure that they operate according to universal standards of justice has been met with approval by pro-freedom and pro-democratic circles.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks in the background as a security agent, one of several, stands during a meeting in Ankara, Turkey, Wednesday, March 24, 2010. Turkey stepped up security around Erdogan in the past few days.(AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici)
The government?s constitutional reform package is generally positive. The pluses in terms of democratization and forming a state of law outweigh today?s situation. A lot will be written about the constitutional reform and referendum, but I would first like to say something on this matter.
The package of constitutional amendments that people have been speaking about for several days has finally been announced. Compared to the estimates or predictions people have been making about its content, it is obvious that it contains some surprises.
The Justice and Development Party (AK Party) has already given up hope on a complete rewriting of the Constitution. This suggests that whatever change is made to the Constitution, we will continue to live within a legal environment set by the 1982 Constitution.
The opposition parties, the Republican People?s Party (CHP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), as well as the heads of some judicial institutions, have given the cold shoulder to a constitutional reform package initiated by the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government.