LEADING NEWS SOURCE FOR TURKEY AND THE REGION

TURKEY tr-national

Government defends new restrictions on alcohol sales

ANKARA- Hürriyet Daily News | 1/12/2011 12:00:00 AM |

New restrictions on Turkey’s alcohol laws, strongly backed by the government, have created a splash in the public and media and worried those involved in the sector.

New restrictions on Turkey’s alcohol laws, strongly backed by the government, have created a splash in the public and media and worried those involved in the sector.

The new regulations brought by the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, would prohibit alcohol from appearing in commercials and advertisements and bring strict new restrictions on alcohol licenses.

Tobacco and Alcohol Market Regulatory Authority, or TAPDK, head Mehmet Küçük defended the new regulations Wednesday. He said the aim was not to restrict freedoms but to lessen alcohol’s incentive.

The TAPDK released the regulations over the weekend and alcohol-manufacturing companies quickly called in legal experts to examine the new laws, worried that they were dangerously unclear and open to broad interpretation.

AKP Group Deputy Chairman Hüseyin Çelik on Wednesday defended the new restrictions, stating they were implemented to protect young adults from alcoholism. He said every country has laws regulating alcohol.

The legal age to purchase alcohol in Turkey is still 18, Çelik said, adding that this is lower than the legal drinking age in the United States.

Ordinary citizens have come together to protest the new regulations. A group on Facebook titled “We drink to the AKP!” had over 80,000 members by the time the Hürriyet Daily News went to press.

While initially set up as a humorous way for people to voice their discontent, the overwhelming response from Turkish Facebook users, most of them young adults, prompted the group to set up meetings in İstanbul, Ankara, İzmir, Eskişehir, and Antalya on Jan. 29.

The press also reacted to the bans, comparing the ruling party to Ottoman Sultan Murad IV, who famously banned coffee and alcohol in Istanbul, executing anyone who disobeyed the law.

MOST POPULAR

MOST COMMENTED

AcerPro S.I.P.A HTML & CSS Agency