There has been a change of ideological direction by Turkey’s Constitutional Court since Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s appointed new members to the institution, columnist Taha Akyol said in Karar newspaper on Sunday.
“The court’s politically important decisions have shifted from a liberal understanding based on universal law, to an understanding that prioritises internal security and public authority,” Akyol said.
According to Akyol, this new ideological emphasis might lead to serious debate over the court’s political neutrality.
The Constitutional Court now has eight members appointed by Erdoğan and seven members appointed before his rise to power.
In January, Erdoğan appointed İrfan Fidan, a former chief public prosecutor in Istanbul, known for his close ties to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), as a judge at the court. Fidan’s appointment may have shifted the balance in the court in Erdoğan’s favour.
Out of the 15 members of the Constitutional Court, Fidan is the seventh to be directly appointed by Erdoğan. He replaced one of six members appointed by former president Abdullah Gül.