Suspect Alan to remain MP until top court rules
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Engin Alan, AA Photo
Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) deputy Engin Alan, who was sentenced on Sept. 21 to 18 years in prison in connection with the Balyoz coup-plot case, will retain his position in Parliament until the Supreme Court of Appeals makes a final ruling. Alan was tried despite having parliamentary immunity because he was charged under Article 14 of the Constitution, which says “None of the rights and freedoms embodied in the Constitution shall be exercised with the aim of violating the indivisible integrity of the state with its territory and nation, or endangering the existence of the democratic and secular order of the Turkish Republic based upon human rights.” Alan’s lawyers will appeal the decision handed down by the local court in Istanbul’s Silivri district, taking the case to the Supreme Court of Appeals. The high court will either approve or reject the decision. If the court approves the decision, the prison sentence Alan has received will be finalized. The decision is also required to be read in Parliament in order to revoke Alan’s duties as a lawmaker. The file will then be sent to Parliament again. If the decision is finalized, it will be announced at the General Assembly and this would be enough to revoke Alan’s membership in Parliament the same day. Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek’s consent is required for the decision to be announced.