Jul 01 2018

Turkey’s top court says state of emergency decrees are law

Turkey’s Constitutional Court on June 30 ruled that the country’s ongoing  state of emergency decrees are law, rejecting the request of the country’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) for their annulment, pro-government NTV news site reported.

The state of emergency, which allows the government to issue decree laws which bypass legislative and judicial procedures, has been in force across Turkey since Jul. 20 2016, and was extended for a seventh time earlier this year. Since its implementation, over 150 media outlets have been shut down, some 50,000 arrested and 150,000 people sacked or suspended from their jobs.

CHP brought the state of emergency decrees numbered 7076 and 7077 - which included issues, such as a new legal requirement for drivers to use winter tires, that were allegedly beyond the scope of the emergency law according to the party - to the Constitutional Court after they were adopted by the parliament as law, NTV said.

Turkey’s top court rejected the application, highlighting that the emergency decrees cannot be declared null and void by the country’s top tribunal.

Accordingly, Turkey’s top court can only review whether a decree becomes law according to proper procedures at the parliament, but it cannot declare it null and void by evaluating its content, scope or timing.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan vowed to lift the ongoing state of emergency as part of his election campaign in the run up to the June 24 polls.