4th judicial package to see critical steps
ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
After changing the structure of specially authorized courts with the 3rd package, the gov’t will take some critical steps with the 4th package in the new legislative year. DAILY NEWS photoThe Justice Ministry will abolish the statute of limitations for torture crimes and the requirement of permission for investigations from the affiliated institutions for public personnel committing murder or injury in the fourth judicial package.
After changing the structure of specially authorized courts with the third judicial package, the government will take some critical steps with the fourth judicial package in the new legislative year, daily Milliyet reported. According to the 4th judicial package, the statute of limitations will be completely abolished in torture crimes, and investigations could be opened against public personnel involved in crimes such as murder or injury without getting authorized permission from the affiliated institutions. In cases of death or injury due to torture or police negligence, prosecutors will be able to open an investigation without asking for permission from the affiliated institution. If the law passes, many law cases which could not be heard since they were not authorized, including the Hrant Dink case, could be reopened.
Decisions of the European Court of Human Rights being grounds for re-trial, which applies for penal and civil courts now, will also apply for military jurisdiction after the law passes. Besides, non-violent address forms, ideas and opinions such as “esteemed Öcalan,” which is not regarded as a crime by the Court of Appeal’s decision, will be decriminalized.
According to the fourth judicial package, the prosecutor’s opinion on convicts’ acquittal demands will be announced to the convicted parties, and married women will be able to use their maiden names on their own. If the European Court of Human Rights finds that “an effective investigation was not conducted,” the investigation file will be reopened and all the detected deficiencies will be filled. The Supreme Court of Appeals has overturned on May 22 a ruling sentencing two Kurdish politicians to prison terms for referring to Öcalan as “esteemed.”
The appeals court referred both to the Turkish Constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights to justify its decision, arguing the act in question fell within the boundaries of the freedom of speech and thus repudiating the Ankara court that had sentenced the suspects to six months in prison each.