Closure of Turkey’s Ruling Party May Lead to Political Crisis in Country: Deputy Chairman

Politics Materials 3 April 2008 14:55 (UTC +04:00)
Closure of   Turkey’s Ruling Party May Lead to Political Crisis in Country: Deputy Chairman

Azerbaijan, Baku, 3 April / corr Trend R.Hafizoglu / The ruling Justice and Development Party (JDP) believes that the suspension of the party's activities will draw Turkey to a new political crisis. However, experts are doubtful about this.

"Closure of the JDP will involve Turkey in the political crisis and tension," Dengir Mir Mehmet Firat, the deputy chairman of the party, told Trend .

On 31 March the Constitution Court of Turkey filed a lawsuit on the cessation of the JDP's activities. The court made this decision following an accusation by the People's Republic Party and the Popular Movement Party, blaming the JDP in the pro-Islamic policy and activities counteracting the Constitution and demanded the party be closed down.

"The JDP came to power not through the falsified elections, but democratically. The closure of the party should be viewed as ignorance of the nation's voice," Firat stated during a telephone discussion from Ankara on 2 April. None of the claims made on the ruling party in connection with the closure of the party meets the reality.

"The charges laid on JDP are not only words from statements of the party officials, but charges made from different newspapers," he said. It is still unknown when the changes will be injected in the Constitution to close the party. "It will be possible to speak about any changes to the Constitution to close the party only after a meeting is scheduled for Monday [7 April], Firat said.

"The JDP is the choice of the Turkish nation and pressure on us means pressure on the nation," he stressed.

Akif Emre, a Turkish political expert, said once the closure of the party causes short-term political crisis, durable political tension will hardly occur. "Banning the JDP's activities may not lead to political tension and crisis in the country. Claims on the party do not reflect the reality of the situation," Emre, the Director of the Turkish news agency Dunyabulteni, told Trend on 2 April via e-mail from Istanbul.

He attributes the last event as a struggle between the 'followers' of Mustafa Kamal Ataturk and the contemporary democrats. "The major reason for the demand to close JDP and filing a lawsuit on the party was the cancellation of a ban on hijab at the education institutions of the country," Emre said.

The expert said that the accusations by opposition parties blaming the JDP in the pro-Islamic policy counteract a healthy plan. "I don't think the Constitution Court will ban JDP's activities," he said. Claims with respect to JDP will strengthen the party's authority even more.

Fatma Benli, the Turkish law-defender, said that no matter how groundless the accusations by the opposition parties are the Court can decide to ban JDP's activities. "Even if the closure of JDP leads to political tension in the country, the Government has experience in solving such situations," she said.


Benli said that the court charges on JDP and all its members, as well as its closure, was illegal.

According to the law-defender, even if charges on JDP damage the party's political authority, they will probably strengthen their position amongst the nation. "The state power belongs to the nation in Turkey," the political expert said.

Meanwhile the Turkish media reported that Dovlet Bakhcali, the leader of the Popular Movement Party, stated that the closure of the JDP may cause political tension in the country.

Christina Nagi, a European Commission representative, considers that the charges laid on the JDP are unjust and should there be serious breaking in the law, Brussels will reconsider its relations with Turkey.

The Constitution Court has given JDP a month to justify its activities.

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