Turkish police and intelligence allowed to use military weapons domestically

Turkey has introduced a controversial amendment in the Movable Property Regulation of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK), National Intelligence Organization (MIT) and General Directorate of Security (EGM), critical newspaper Cumhuriyet said on Tursday.

The amendment published by the Official Gazette on Wednesday said Turkish Army, Police Department and MIT will be allowed to transfer their movable properties to each other without any conditions if national security, public order and public security are seriously threatened in the events of terrorism, civil unrest and acts of violence, according to the same reports published on Turkish media on Thursday.

The amendment paves the way for the transfer of weapons and vehicles of the Turkish Armed Forces to the Police and MIT with the approval of the Minister of National Defense on the grounds of "terrorism, civil unrest and acts of violence".

The amendment arrived as Turkish police intervention in student protests against the appointment of a pro-gov’t rector at Boğaziçi University sparked controversy in the country.

''It clears the way for a complete military dictatorship without elections by charging tanks over its citizens when it deems it necessary'', a tweeter user commented.

Hundreds of students and academics have called for the new rector Melih Bulu’s resignation, saying his appointment violated the university’s academic freedom and democratic values. Some analysts and academics have also accused Bulu of plagiarism in his masters and doctoral theses. He denies the charges.