Thursday, July 21, 2016

The Purge In Turkey Continues: Turkish Lawmakers Give Erdogan 'Sweeping New Powers'

Turkish Lawmakers Give Leader Erdogan Sweeping New Powers

Turkey will be able to extend detention times for suspects and issue decrees without parliamentary approval under a three-month state of emergency approved Thursday by lawmakers following last week's attempted military coup.

Parliament voted 346-115 to approve the national state of emergency, which gives sweeping new powers to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who had been accused of autocratic conduct even before this week's crackdown on alleged opponents. Erdogan has said the state of emergency will counter threats to Turkish democracy.

Even without the emergency measures, his government has already imposed a crackdown that has included mass arrests, mass firings and the closure of hundreds of schools. Erdogan said the new powers would allow the government to rid the military of the "virus" of subversion, blaming the coup attempt on a U.S.-based Muslim cleric, Fethullah Gulen. The cleric has denied any knowledge of the attempted coup.

"This is a state of emergency imposed not on the people, but on (the state) itself," declared Prime Minister Binali Yildirim. "We will, one by one, cleanse the state of (Gulen's followers) and eliminate those who are trying to harm the country."
The government hopes the state of emergency will be lifted within 40 to 45 days, said Yildirim's deputy, Numan Kurtulmus.

Turkey immediately said it was partially suspending the European Convention on Human Rights, allowing it more leeway to deal with individual cases, by invoking an article most recently used by France and Ukraine. The Council of Europe said it had been informed of Turkey's decision, and that the convention will still apply, but that individual exceptions will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Meanwhile, video emerged of soldiers firing at crowds who rushed to defend the government during the failed coup. Footage from CCTV cameras above the Bosporus Bridge in Istanbul showed soldiers shooting at a man who had his hands up as he approached tanks that were blocking traffic. Other footage, obtained from the Turkish Dogan news agency, showed a mob attacking surrendering soldiers on the bridge after daybreak.

On Thursday, thousands of people again gathered at the bridge to protest the failed coup. Waving Turkish flags, the crowd walked across the bridge linking the European and Asian sides of the city, some defiantly chanting, "Our martyrs are immortal, our nation cannot be divided!"

Since the July 15 coup attempt, the government has arrested nearly 10,000 people. More than 58,880 civil service employees - including teachers, university deans and police - have been dismissed, suspended, forced to resign or had their licenses revoked for allegedly being Gulen followers.
Turkish state media said Thursday that another 32 judges and two military officers had been detained by authorities.

The main opposition Republican People's Party, or CHP, slammed the state of emergency move.
Speaking ahead of the vote, CHP lawmaker Ozgur Ozel said the decision would amount to a "civilian coup" against Parliament and was a display of "ingratitude" to all the legislators who had gathered in the assembly Saturday to oppose the coup attempt.

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Simsek defended the move, saying he hoped the state of emergency would be short-lived. He said it would be used to go after "rogue" elements within the state and that there would have been "carnage in the streets" had the military coup succeeded.

Simsek said that "standards of the European Court of Human Rights will be upheld," but didn't elaborate.

"There will be no curfews. There will be no restriction of movement other than for the suspects," Simsek said.

Amnesty International said it recognized that the government had to take measures to prevent another coup attempt, but warned that under the state of emergency, dismissed civil servants would not be able to challenge the decrees in administrative courts and detention periods would be extended.

"Our concern is that government is going well beyond what might be considered a legitimate response to the coup attempt," said Andrew Gardener of the group's Istanbul office.
"People are being pursued without any evidence that they participated in this coup," he said, adding that the government is "targeting people for their political affiliations. It's not upholding the rule of law."

Under the Turkish constitution, the emergency measures allow the government to "partially or entirely" suspend "the exercise of fundamental rights and freedoms," so long as that doesn't violate international law obligations.


ChristineInCleveland said...

I can sure see how Erdogan qualifies as Obama's BFF. Bet he is Obama's role model for plotting his agenda for the United States... So much coming at us right now, I can almost hear those wedding bells as Christ prepares to sweep away His Bride!

Scott said...

BFF -lol. So true

Caver said...

We gotta watch out. Obama and those pulling his strings have come out of the closet. If Trump wins, their plans for 50 years will be trashed out and maybe a purge (legal) that lands a huge number of them in prison. All the chips are on the poker table.

They simply can't afford to let Trump take office and start making his changes. They just can't. This is the one thing they never envisioned. This simply wasn't on the horizon. Its shock and dismay.....we can and will think on our own.

Look for acts of desperation to follow. Not predicting anything, just suggesting it a good idea to be as prepared as possible.

Scott said...

Good point - i agree. Also i think we are reaching a point where the restrainer must be removed for their plans to progress

Unknown said...

Everything is coming to a head....agree with Scott on the restrainer & Caver on Trump. Another attack in Germany. I expect the chaos to ramp up....although I'm surprised there wasn't more uproar at the RNC. It should be an interesting 90 days. Look for those opportunities to plant seeds with the unsaved. Like Caver, I'm not making any predictions, I just feel like last call is about to be or is being given.


ally said...

Yep! Just remember these guys think long term so this is just a bump in their road. We are either going to have Marshall law OR the big un is going to get dropped in the middle east shortly. Also remember they control the voting machines and still actually think hillobeans will win.
I seriously and totally believe what we have seen at the Republican convention is the manifestation of the answer to our prayers. Keep praying. Now that those illuminaighty monsters are scared of!!!!
Scott please email me an adress I can send this Michael Lake book to you. No joke brother, it pulls all of the pieces together like I've never even begin to fathom.