Turkish parliament breaks record by passing 41 international agreements
ANKARAThe Turkish parliament has passed 41 international agreements in one sitting, as political parties have also delivered messages to their parliamentary groups on consolidation between parties.
The parliament has passed more than 70 different international agreements over two days, while party groups in parliament have agreed to give up their rights to negotiate on contracts.
Working in collaboration on the second day of the voting on March 1, lawmakers have stressed on the importance of reconciliation in parliament.
Ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) group deputy spokesperson Mustafa Elitaş expressed his appreciation over the collaboration between groups.
“Today, we have passed 40 international contracts. It is a historical record,” he said, as lawmakers issued 40 different contracts in less than four hours.
Referring to the upcoming referendum on constitutional amendment, which will be voted on April 16, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy leader Özgür Özel said the parliament proved to be effective when put under circumstances of compromise and collaboration.
“We say ‘yes’ to everything that would strengthen the parliament, but will continue to say ‘no’ to transfer parliament’s authorities,” Özel said.
Speaking on behalf of the opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), lawmaker Erol Dora said their party wanted to see the sense of agreement spread in every field.
“I also invite all parties to show the same sensitivity in terms of freedom of expression and when issuing legal regulations for the peace of our citizens, to make our country implement the rule of law,” Dora said.
The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and the HDP have both similarly criticized the contracts passed in parliament.
“The institutions, in time, made those agreements differentiating important and unimportant ones, and made a commitment. Today, they came to us and we had to clean them,” MHP lawmaker Erhan Usta said, which HDP lawmaker Pervin Buldan agreed with.
“We had the same criticism, we actually realized that we were negotiating on the agreements with countries we had never heard of,” Buldan said.
The Foreign Affairs Commission has issued 397 international agreements to be approved in parliament, of which 199 were agreed.
The parliament is expected to work on the rest during this week.