MHP unveils 100-article draft of constitution, calls on other parties to join efforts

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ANKARA, TURKEY - NOVEMBER 29 : Turkey's Nationalist Movement Party's leader (MHP) Devlet Bahceli gives a speech during his party's group meeting at the The Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) in Ankara, Turkey on November 29, 2016. Okan Ozer / Anadolu Agency

The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) has introduced a 100-article constitutional draft in a bid to contribute to the ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) call for a new charter on the centennial of the Republic of Turkey.

“Our constitutional draft consists of four sections and 100 articles. We will first share this draft with our president and our ally, the AK Party and launch an internal discussion. Later, we may hand it to other political parties and the civil society for a broader discussion,” MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli told at a press conference on May 4.

Bahçeli’s move comes after President and AKP Chairman Recep Tayyip Erdoğan stated that Turkey deserved a brand-new civilian constitution as it prepares to mark the 100th anniversary of its foundation. He explained that the MHP completed the writing of the draft to support Erdoğan’s call for the new constitution and called on all parties to do the same.

“We, as the MHP, have drafted our own constitution and revealed what kind of a constitution we want. All other parties should also concretely explain what sort of a constitution they want in a clear way,” Bahçeli said. “To compromise and ready a new constitution is now a national duty.”

MHP leader stressed that one of the objectives of this constitutional draft is to strengthen the existing executive-presidential system and turn Turkey into the leading nation of the 21st century.

The MHP’s draft has a preamble and four main sections with a total of 100 articles, Bahçeli stated. The first section constitutes the main principles of the Turkish state under five articles. In the second section, the constitution frames the fundamental rights and duties with a broad approach on human rights and liberties based on universal human rights conventions Turkey is a part of, he added. It endorses the approach of “the integrity of rights” and limits to these rights under a single article.

The main institutions and their functions are organized under the third section of the draft under the titles of the execution, legislation and judiciary. The parliament speaker is tasked to resolve the political crisis when needed as an impartial mediator, according to the draft, Bahçeli stated.

The execution is organized under two bodies; the president and the administration in a bid to further institutionalize the executive-presidential system. The president and his two vice presidents should be elected together, he stressed.

Turkey’s unitary model is being endorsed through the new charter, he added.

Bahçeli, who has long been criticizing the Constitutional Court, informed that the draft suggests the establishment of a new Supreme Court.

Hurriyet Daily News

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